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Rank: 88

Iowa State University

Ames, IA
Iowa State University, which sits 30 miles north of Des Moines, has an excellent agricultural college, as you might expect. But the math and science departments are also among the best at any state university. In fact, some of the school's 36,000 students come from all around the world to study there (although about 54% of students are Iowan). Iowa State is an even more attractive option when considering the low tuition costs, since in-state students can obtain a degree for less than $85,000. Iowa State is a leader in virtual reality, with a research center devoted to the field and a facility it calls "the world's highest resolution, fully immersive virtual environment." Students often mention the amazing friendships they've made at ISU. It could be the school's many clubs or events designed to promote school spirit. It could be the excellent academics. Or it could just be because Iowans are such a friendly bunch. But whatever the reason, graduates seem to agree that their time spent at ISU was about the best time of their lives. Iowa State's graduation rate of nearly 74% is well above that of schools with similar student bodies, in MONEY's calculations. Students who do graduate report early career earnings averaging $52,700, which is 5% higher than similar students from other schools.
costs
Est. Full Price 2018-2019
$21,100
% of students who get any grants
68%
Est. price for students who receive aid
$14,600
Average price for low-income students
$8,700
admissions
Acceptance rate
87%
Median SAT/ACT Score
1130/25
SAT/ACT required?
Yes
Enrollment
32,814
Financial Aid
% of students with need who get grants
97%
% of need met
79%
% of students who get merit* grants
34%
Average merit grant
$3,164
student success
Graduation rate
74%
Average time to a degree
4.5 years
Average student debt
$23,900
Average salary within 3 years
$52,700
% of low-income students who become upper middle class
36%
key deadlines
Early decision application
N/A
Regular application
rolling

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, , MONEY/College Measures calculations, Equality of Oppourtunity Project.

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, , MONEY/College Measures calculations, Equality of Oppourtunity Project.

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