chWhen you think of colleges in America, a few heavy hitters probably come to mind. Something along the lines of Harvard, Yale and NYU. Sure, these are great schools, but there are so many awesome underrated colleges throughout the US. Here are just a few of the best of them:

1. San Diego State University: Graduation is here

San Diego State has a ton of benefits. For starters, you get to live in beautiful San Diego, California. This school is one of the few to actually have its graduation rate increased by ten percent over the last decade. Plus, the median income post-graduation is around $85,000, so your education investment is likely to pay off.

2. Rutgers University at Newark: Hands on Training from Day 1

This university knows the value of hands on education. This program is designed to get students learning by doing. Although this tactic is well known to help students absorb more information, few universities today provide as many opportunities as this one.

3. University of Missouri at Kansas City: Bang for your Buck

This school has consistently ranked as Princeton Review’s Best Value College. Here you can get the education you need without breaking the bank.

4. University of Maryland, Baltimore County: Where Innovation Lives

The University of Maryland in Baltimore County is known for its innovative take on education. Its an honors university with high quality students learning exactly how to adapt to today’s workforce.

5. University of Colorado at Denver: Making Bank

The median mid-career salary for graduates from this fine institution is $116,000. That will do you just fine as you study in beautiful Colorado.

6. University of San Francisco: Service Learning for all

USF specializes in bringing service learning to their student body. These specially designed learning experiences not only enrich the lives of the students, but also enrich the surrounding community.

7. University of Houston: Become an Entrepreneur

The University of Houston’s entrepreneur program is consistently ranked as one of the best in the country. Combined with their outstanding business school, you’ve got all the resources you need to make your dream come true.

8. Michigan Technological University: Start off Strong

This university features some of the highest starting salaries for its graduates. If you are considering the value of a public school, but would like to make bank starting immediately after graduation, Michigan Technological University has much to offer.

9. Widener University: Civic Engagement for Everybody

Located in Chester, Pennsylvania this campus is perfect for those looking to get involved in their civic duties. Students here are encouraged and frequently take advantage of the numerous internship opportunities located a mere twenty minutes away from campus in Philadelphia.

10. Florida Institute of Technology: International Students Succeed

This university was originally founded as a place to further the learning of those working on the space program in Florida. Today, US News reports that it ranks number one in foster international student experiences.

11. University of Alabama at Huntsville: Landing those big name jobs

Since this university is conveniently placed near several big name federal institutions, including NASA, Redstone Arsenal, and Cummings Research Park students are well placed to land some of the best jobs at these institutions. By mid career, graduates from Huntsville make around $90,000.

12. Pace University: Learn by doing

This university is located in the heart of New York City. It emphasizes the importance of hands on learning and offers a wide array of degree programs.

13. Missouri University of Science and Technology: Ladies in Tech

This school boasts one of the largest female populations for any technology school in the country. Additionally, students on average spend 16 hours in their labs and classrooms. This is a sure sign that they are dedicated and have been encouraged to excel by their professors.

14. New Jersey Institute of Technology: Get that Job!

Located in Newark, this university is ranked as one of the best schools for job placement. This means that students from this school are more likely to land the jobs they want as they graduate.

15. Clarkson University: An excellent value

With the cost of education on the rise, its important to find schools that offer the most bang for their buck. Clarkson University is consistently ranked as one of the best value schools in the country. Some of this school’s strongest programs include biotechnology, environment and energy, entrepreneurship, and global supply-chain management.

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