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A student’s investment in higher education can be one of the most important decisions for individuals and families. With so many factors to consider when looking for a college  the task can be daunting. A recent report by Brookings Institution measured colleges by economic payout, which has received much praise within higher education circles.

The rankings in the report measure factors that best predict economic outcomes of students based on data for over 7,000 higher education institutions.

The calculations for these rankings are determined by the value that a college has added to the economic success of the college’s alumni. Economic success is determined by alumni earnings, occupational earnings power, and loan repayment rates.

Data for the rankings have been drawn for 4,897 community colleges from government and private sources. For a more in-depth look at ranking factors, click here.

Calculating the Value Added by a College

valueadded

Image source: Brookings.edu

For each college the value added is determined by the difference between actual economic outcomes and predicted outcomes for the average alumni.

The Earnings, Occupational Earnings Power, and Loan Repayment scores shown below represent a percentage of how much better an institution performed than similar institutions, according to Brooking’s estimation.

EDsmart has taken Brooking’s report one step further to rank the top community colleges according to their percentage of value-added.

Top 10 Community Colleges with Better than Projected Alumni Outcomes

top_value_added_colleges

NHTI - Concord's Community College

NHTI - Concord's Community College
Concord, NH

Earnings: 100

Occupational Earnings Power: 99

Loan Repayment: 99

Predicted Earnings

$55,304

Actual Earnings

$68,700

Value Added

22%

School Website: https://www.nhti.edu

Lee College

lee_college_tx
Baytown, TX

Earnings: 100

Occupational Earnings Power: 77

Loan Repayment: 28

Predicted Earnings

$55,971

Actual Earnings

$69,000

Value Added

21%

School Website: http://www.lee.edu/

Pearl River Community College

Pearl River Community College
Poplarville, MS

Earnings: 99

Occupational Earnings Power: 52

Loan Repayment: 58

Predicted Earnings

$50,371

Actual Earnings

$62,000

Value Added

21%

School Website: http://www.prcc.edu/

Pueblo Community College

Pueblo Community College
Pueblo, CO

Earnings: 99

Occupational Earnings Power: 28

Loan Repayment: 27

Predicted Earnings

$50,473

Actual Earnings

$61,100

Value Added

19%

School Website: http://www.pueblocc.edu/

Briarcliffe College

Briarcliffe College
Bethpage, NY

Earnings: 99

Occupational Earnings Power: 54

Loan Repayment: 40

Predicted Earnings

$51,201

Actual Earnings

$61,900

Value Added

19%

School Website: http://www.briarcliffe.edu/

Bakersfield College

Bakersfield College
Bakersfield, CA

Earnings: 98

Occupational Earnings Power: 82

Loan Repayment: 5

Predicted Earnings

$56,957

Actual Earnings

$7,200

Value Added

17%

School Website: https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/

TSTC Waco

tstc_waco
Waco, TX

Earnings: 98

Occupational Earnings Power: 96

Loan Repayment: 7

Predicted Earnings

$55,257

Actual Earnings

$65,000

Value Added

16%

School Website: https://www.waco.tstc.edu

San Diego City College

San Diego City College
San Diego, CA

Earnings: 98

Occupational Earnings Power: 92

Loan Repayment: 11

Predicted Earnings

$60,297

Actual Earnings

$70,900

Value Added

16%

School Website: http://www.sdcity.edu/

Northcentral Technical College

northtechnical_wassau
Wausau, WI

Earnings: 97

Occupational Earnings Power: 89

Loan Repayment: 94

Predicted Earnings

$50,302

Actual Earnings

$57,800

Value Added

14%

School Website: http://www.ntc.edu/

Minnesota State Community and Technical College

Minnesota State Community and Technical College
Fergus Falls, MN

Earnings: 97

Occupational Earnings Power: 74

Loan Repayment: 81

Predicted Earnings

$52,372

Actual Earnings

$59,900

Value Added

13%

School Website: http://www.ntc.edu/

Ranking Information

value-added

value_added_colleges_ranking

Economic Outcomes

  • Alumni mid-career salary
  • Occupational earnings power
  • Federal student loan default rates

College Quality

  • Curriculum value
  • Share of graduates prepared to work in STEM fields
  • Value of Alumni Skills
  • Graduation rate, twice normal length
  • Retention or re-enrollment rate
  • Institutional aid per student, average
  • Average salary of instructional staff
  • X-factor

Student characteristics

  • Enrollment
  • Percent of freshman from same state
  • Foreign-born student share of enrollment
  • Asian student share of enrollment
  • White student share of enrollment
  • Average age of students
  • Percent attending part time
  • Female share of students
  • Percent of students receiving no aid
  • Percent of students receiving federal loans
  • Pell grant aid per student
  • Standardized math scores
  • ACT and SAT scores on the quantitative sections, standardized to have mean zero and a standard deviation of one, and weighted by number of students taking each exam. For schools with no scores, expected scores were imputed based on student characteristics.
  • LinkedIn salary bias

College Characteristics

  • Modal degree is one year
  • Modal degree is bachelor’s
  • Modal degree is post-bachelor’s
  • Online college (all students enrolled only in distance learning)
  • Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education
  • Percentage distribution of degrees granted by level

College geographic characteristics that determine predicted outcomes

  • Local price index 2012
  • The cost of living relative to other metropolitan areas.
  • State location

Sources: PayScale, LinkedIn and the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Employment Statistics (May 2013), U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey; the data were obtained from the University of Minnesota’s Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS)., O*NET, U.S. Department of Education’s IPEDS database, Analysis of data from LinkedIn for alumni skills by college and from Burning Glass for value of skills (for more information, see: “Still Searching: Job Vacancies and STEM Skills”), Bureau of Economic Analysis

All compiled data can be found at Brookings.edu

Congratulations on making the EDsmart Top 10 list! Feel free to place this badge on your website to show your students your accomplishment.

top_value_added_colleges
Copy and paste the code below to add the badge to your site

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