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Princeton Review names Drake a top university for return on investment

Princeton Review names Drake a top university for return on investment

Drake University is among the nation’s best colleges for students seeking great academics, outstanding career preparation, and generous financial aid according to The Princeton Review.

Drake is one of 200 schools the education services company profiles in its new book, Colleges That Pay You Back: The 200 Schools That Give You the Best Bang for Your Tuition Buck – 2017 Edition (Penguin Random House / Princeton Review).

The listing complements other national recognition that Drake has received in the past year for value, academic quality, and overall quality by outlets including Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, U.S. News and World Report, and Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education.

“We are continually exploring new ways to maximize the value of a Drake degree,” said Drake University President Marty Martin. “In the past year we have taken major steps to make the cost of a Drake education more predictable, and to affirm the exceptionally high quality of education that we have provided for generations.”

In September, Drake announced the Tuition Guarantee, which locks in the cost of tuition for the vast majority of undergraduate students during their time at the university. The Tuition Guarantee makes the cost of education more predictable, helps to maintain the value of renewable scholarships as a percentage of tuition, and saves families money compared to peer institutions’ average annual rate of tuition increase over four years.

Also this year, the university articulated the defining features of a Drake education through The Drake Commitment, a pledge that all incoming students will receive personal mentorship, broaden their worldview through service-learning opportunities, have the flexibility to explore diverse interests through a tuition-free January Term experience, and gain access to research and internship opportunities that contribute to a great resume.

The Princeton Review chose their Colleges that Pay You Back for 2017 based on data collected from fall 2015 through fall 2016 via institutional surveys and from PayScale.com on alumni and career statistics. The company used 40 weighted data points—including academics, cost, financial aid, student debt, graduation rates, alumni salaries, and job satisfaction. Only two other Iowa colleges and universities appear in the book.

National outlets consistently rank Drake University among the nation’s highest values for higher education. In December, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance placed Drake at No. 39 on its annual list of 100 best values for private universities. The inaugural Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education ranking of U.S. colleges placed Drake University at No. 135 in a list that includes more than 1,000 schools nationwide. U.S. News and World Report gave Drake the No. 3 spot on the publication’s 2017 rankings in the category of best Midwest master’s institutions.

Last year, The Economist ranked Drake University 17th nationally for return on investment—with alumni earnings that are in the 98th percentile of all four-year, non-vocational private colleges. A report by the nonprofit Brookings Institution found that Drake University adds more than 32 percent to the projected mid-career earnings of demographically similar graduates from institutions with similar characteristics.

Visit www.drake.edu/admission to learn more about Drake’s admission process and academic offerings.


Note: This article was updated June 16, 2017, to reflect a revision by the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education of their annual rankings data. The publication upgraded Drake’s overall national ranking to 135, up from the original rank of 149.


Drake University is a private university in Des Moines, Iowa, enrolling more than 3,300 undergraduate and 1,700 graduate students from 40 states and approximately 40 countries. Students choose from more than 70 undergraduate programs and 20 graduate degrees. Through the Drake Commitment, every student receives personal mentorship, a variety of service-learning opportunities, the flexibility to explore diverse interests, and the professional preparation required to build a strong resume. Faculty and staff take advantage of the wealth of cultural, recreational, and business opportunities found in Iowa’s capital city. In return, Drake enriches the city through its own cultural offerings, considerable economic impact, and many service-learning endeavors, which channel the talent and energy of the Drake students toward meeting the needs of the community.