A bachelor’s degree in engineering can be an entry into a high-paying, rewarding career in the applied sciences field, but as in most professional fields today, the bachelor’s is only a starting point. As more people recognize the importance of a college degree, and more working adults return to school to improve their credentials with a higher degree, the need to raise your status on the job market becomes more important. The most obvious way to stand out is with a master’s degree.
Because engineering is a highly specialized, technical, and hands-on field, a residential graduate program, rather than online, is still the most common choice. The most reputable engineering schools will provide graduate students access to laboratories, libraries, and other key resources to enhance their education. Most research universities, particularly those in the top tier of high or very high Carnegie Foundation research status, will have opportunities for graduate students to take part in professional research projects with faculty members, either through research assistantships or in class. Real research experience is a significant advantage on your resume.
Residential programs have the added advantage of providing significant employment opportunities. The state of contemporary engineering prioritizes cooperation between academic, government, and corporate research, which means most engineering schools today have multiple connections to industries in the region that can translate into jobs after graduation. Particularly if you have worked successfully as a graduate student on a cooperative project, the network your institution provides can make the difference between success and struggle on the job market.
With higher education bursting at the seams, there are many second-rate or disreputable schools trying to capitalize on the demand for degrees, which makes consumer information more important than ever for prospective students. The Value Colleges Best Value rankings are designed to guide future students to the most trustworthy, most financially sound choices. The colleges, universities, and institutions ranked by Value Colleges are all regionally accredited, financially transparent, and highly reputable.
Best Value ranking is based on 3 metrics:
- U.S. News & World 2016 Report Best Engineering Graduate Schools
- PayScale’s 2016 College Salary Report (data reported for entry-level Engineers)
- Actual tuition (data collected from NCES)
Our formula gives us the best balance between cost and return, so that students can count on receiving a solid education and earning a degree that will be respected and competitive on the job market, ultimately providing a positive return on the investment of time, money, and hard work that is higher education.
Texas A&M University, College Station
Texas A&M University is one of the leading research universities in the US, with the second-largest endowment of any public institution, two major research campuses (Research Valley and Research Park), and the fourth largest student body. They have been instrumental in recognizing the commercial value of academic research, and connections to NASA, the National Science Foundation, and other significant government agencies and corporate partners mean that A&M Engineering is not only plugged in to the real world – they are shaping it. Residential students in TAMU’s Dwight Look College of Engineering take part in one of the most dynamic engineering schools in the world, and can choose from graduate programs in everything from aerospace engineering to renowned programs in ocean engineering and petroleum engineering. Most importantly, TAMU is a significant value, with full-time graduate students paying only a little more than $2000 per semester in tuition. It’s the ideal balance between quality and affordability, making Texas A&M University the top Value Colleges best value.
University of California, Berkeley
Without UC Berkeley engineering, the west would look very different: no Hoover Dam (and water for much of the American west), no Golden Gate Bridge, and no Silicon Valley. Aware that engineering – whether it’s civil, mechanical, bio, or industrial – is at the center of today’s economy, Berkeley’s College of Engineering has long championed the development of useful, marketable technology and knowledge. Berkeley is also a model of diversity in engineering, attracting women and minority students to a field that has historically been heavily male. Residential graduate students benefit from some of the most advanced research facilities in the world, and a faculty dedicated to cutting-edge research, as well as connections to the government agencies and global corporations that employ only the best engineers. With a public-university price tag and potential for an impressive ROI, Berkeley is one of the best choices for value in graduate engineering.
University of Texas, Austin
Just a few years ago, UT Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering would not have been recognized among the best-known engineering programs. Though Austin has long been the most respected university in Texas, the tech boom that has engulfed Austin in recent years has brought an exploding job market for top-tier engineers, and Cockrell is producing them. UT Austin’s growth has been strategic and impressive, attracting an impressively diverse set of graduate students to their nationally-recognized programs in Petroleum Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Biomedical, among many others. For residential students, Austin is a draw not only because of its wealth of employment opportunity, but because of its national and international reputation as a center of innovation, creativity, and entertainment. With UT’s public university mission to keep education within financial reach, students will pay a little more than $5000 per semester to earn a degree with a high potential ROI, making UT Austin a good investment for a graduate engineering degree.
The Purdue University College of Engineering has a legendary history as one of the main contributors to the early days of NASA space exploration, but their eyes are pointed straight into the future with such advances as wireless medical implants and a groundbreaking partnership with GE. Purdue’s rankings are consistently top-10 nationally, and its well-earned reputation has led to large endowments and a significant research budget that graduate students will find an advantage, as they participate and learn from innovative work all around them. Purdue is growing, and their reputation is growing with them. Graduate students can specialize in all of the most in-demand areas of modern engineering, including leading interdisciplinary programs such as Biomedical Engineering, all for a reasonable $5500 per semester.
University of California, San Diego
The University of California system is a leader in engineering, and all are top values thanks to the right combination of reasonable cost and high reputation. UC San Diego is a center of computer engineering, as the home of the San Diego Supercomputer Center, one of the first institutions of its kind, and UCSD’s biomedical engineering, nanotechnology, and environmental engineering research are at the top of their class. With some of the highest funding in the US (fourth for research endowment among public institutions), the Jacobs School of Engineering gives graduate students access to the very forefront of engineering study, while a thriving tech economy in San Diego offers a substantial job market to top engineers. Graduate engineering students have the added benefits of life in San Diego, widely regarded as a best place to live, and of the UC system tuition, which makes for a high return on investment.
UCLA’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science is one of the most respected, and historically significant, engineering schools in the US. UCLA rightfully calls the Samueli School the birthplace of the Internet, having sent the first email in history through the newly-created ARPANET. UCLA has continued to innovate and develop, and today has eight externally-funded research centers as well as an impressive research endowment. Further good news for students includes tuition – which, as with all the UC system schools, is kept reasonable – and reputation; UCLA is a name recognized for excellence on the job market, and with many government and private partnerships graduate students can expect their networking and connections to pay off big time on their investment.
University of New Mexico
One of the most pressing concerns in engineering education today is diversity, especially the inclusion of women and underrepresented ethnic groups. It’s an issue that the University of New Mexico has well in hand as a proudly Hispanic Serving Institution, one of only a handful of Research 1 (top tier) public universities with that commitment. In addition to their diversity, the UNM School of Engineering is consistently ranked one of the top public graduate engineering schools by U.S. News & World Report and other influential ranking publications. UNM offers graduate degrees in all the main areas of engineering, as well as a number of interdisciplinary programs such as Nanoscience & Microsystems and Optical Science & Engineering. Graduates from UNM’s School of Engineering earn a highly-respected degree from a university committed to changing the face of engineering and engineering education.
University of California, Santa Barbara
What sets UC Santa Barbara apart from the other University of California system institutions on the Best Value list? Aside from one of the most beautiful campuses in the world, including its own beach and an extensive system of biking and hiking trails for students’ physical and mental health? Well, one thing worth mentioning is UCSB Engineering’s dedication to “convergence,” with more than twenty interdisciplinary research centers and a robust system of corporate connections that creates a pipeline from the laboratory to the real world. Seeing as synchronicity is the state of modern engineering and technology, UCSB, a Public Ivy with affordable tuition and top-tier reputation, is a prime place for graduate students to prepare for engineering careers that will provide a sound return on investment.
LSU, Baton Rouge
At the end of an ambitious 5-year strategic plan, Louisiana State University’s College of Engineering has succeeded in raising their profile and reputation impressively, with active research centers and diversity initiatives to bring engineering home to a wide range of students. LSU’s efforts to expand its educational services and engineering expertise after Hurricane Katrina have only increased LSU’s reputation as one of the main economic drivers in the state of Louisiana, improving life for all residents. Graduate programs are on offer in numerous areas, though LSU is particularly remarkable for their Coastal and Ecological Engineering and Petroleum Engineering, as LSU is a land-, sea-, and space-grant university. Graduate engineering students will find in LSU a degree that only increases in value as time goes on.
University of Oklahoma
The University of Oklahoma College of Engineering has long been at the forefront of educational innovation, introducing new concepts such as a degree in engineering physics, and incorporating laptops and classroom internet before other colleges could catch up. OU has a very high research production and leads the nation in National Merit Scholars, and a robust diversity program includes student groups for Native American, Hispanic, and Black students, as well as the Society of Women Engineers. OU is also home to the Mewbourne College of Earth & Energy, with one of the top petroleum engineering programs in the world. All this for one of the lowest tuition rates you’re likely to find for a program of this caliber, meaning a top-reputation degree for a sound investment.
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
The University of Illinois was founded on applied science, as the university’s seal (featuring a steam engine) attests; as a land-grant university, the early years of UIUC were marked by fierce debates on the relative merits of a liberal arts education and a technical education. Illinois successfully integrated the two, and today the College of Engineering remains one of the best in the nation, typically no lower than the top 5 in U.S. News & World Report rankings. Graduate students at Illinois have access to leading-edge developments, and get the benefit of collaborating to build the future. Illinois residents can earn a graduate degree in engineering for a little more than $17,000 a year, an affordable entry into a career that can provide a much higher ROI.
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Widely considered the best public engineering school in New England, the University of Massachusetts College of Engineering is well-funded, with many high-profile research grants and ample opportunity for graduate students to take part in significant research projects. Unlike many of its private rivals in New England, UMass keeps tuition affordable, and its robust financial aid keeps a graduate engineering degree accessible. Plus, residential students will find Amherst a legendarily appealing place to live, often ranked as the best college town in America. The many advantages UMass offers makes the College of Engineering a smart investment.
University of Michigan
If Amherst has any serious competition for best college town, it’s Ann Arbor, a location that many would say is a significant advantage when choosing a residential program. The University of Michigan College of Engineering is another top public institution, nearly always in the top 10 of U.S. News & World Report Rankings, as well as other respected critics. Michigan, like UCLA, was at the beginning of the internet and provided some of the foundational technologies that made modern communications possible. Today, Michigan offers graduate degrees in every major engineering field, and Michigan graduate students are part of a large, influential group of alumni throughout engineering, meaning anywhere you want to work, you’ll probably find a Wolverine.
Founded to bring polytechnic-style education to the south, bringing the south into the Industrial Revolution, Georgia Tech has remained at the vanguard of engineering education and research for well over a century. The Georgia Tech College of Engineering, from its urban campus in Atlanta, GA, is central to technology and science in the south and beyond, and has an international reputation as a major research institution. Georgia Tech’s ROI, well over $800,000, places it in the range of expensive private polytechnics like MIT and Stanford, but as a public institution, tuition is much lower than those institutes, making Georgia Tech an investment few can compete with.
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Those who have lived in Madison, WI, will generally attest to its reputation as one of the best places to live, and one of the most inviting college towns in the US. Graduates of the University of Wisconsin College of Engineering will further attest that there are very few places that can deliver the kind of value that Wisconsin offers. As a tier 1 research institution with budget of over $1 billion, UW can offer graduate students access to the kind of research that only the major polytechnics and the biggest public universities can provide. Wisconsin has been a highly-ranked institution for many years thanks to this combination of opportunity, reputation, and return on investment, providing graduates with a respected degree and all the experience they need to make their graduate engineering degree into a rewarding career.
Calling Cornell University the youngest of the Ivy League is a little misleading – it was founded in 1865, which still gives it a distinguished history. But Cornell’s relative youth is important, as Cornell is the only land-grant university in the Ivy League and was thus founded on agriculture, mechanical engineering, and applied science, unlike the liberal arts colleges that formed the rest of the Ivy League. Cornell’s College of Engineering remains one of the top engineering schools in the nation, perennially in the top ten, and the engineering physics and nanotechnology programs are models for the rest of the field. Graduate students can expect a high ROI and competitive reputation on the job market, making Cornell an Ivy League value.
Texas Tech University
Located in Lubbock, in west Texas, Texas Tech University has built its engineering reputation since 1925. Currently known for its nanotechnology, environmental, and energy research, Texas Tech researchers have made significant advances in light, wind, and water engineering. Texas Tech’s Whitacre College of Engineering is also recognized as one of the best engineering schools for women and minorities, thanks to a concerted effort to recruit Hispanic students. Graduates students at Texas Tech can also expect low residential student tuition rates from this public university, giving graduates a higher ROI and making Texas Tech a solid investment.
University of Houston
The Cullen College of Engineering, at the University of Houston, has a steadily growing reputation and a high level of research production, meaning graduate students can count on a degree program that will give them significant experience and a strong market potential. That is especially true, for obvious reasons, for Houston’s petroleum engineering programs, where the location really is everything. Rapidly outpacing Chicago as the third largest city in the US, Houston is on a rise that does not seem anywhere near stopping. The Cullen College also offers an exciting new Subsea Engineering program, as well as a top-ranked Chemical Engineering program, all for an affordable public-university price.
Yes, MIT is one of the most elite polytechnic institutes in the world, and yes, their tuition is very high on paper. But paper doesn’t account for two important facts. First, if you’re promising enough to get accepted, MIT will make sure you can pay with grants, scholarships, and other aid without ever having to take out loans. Secondly, the average ROI for MIT graduates is tremendous, nearly $800,000. So don’t let the sticker price keep you from applying. Obviously, a degree from MIT will be challenging and hard to get, but it’s also an investment that few other universities can match.
University of Washington
With the reputation of a Public Ivy, and a history as one of the first colleges on the west coast, the University of Washington is one of the foremost higher education institutions on the Pacific. UW’s research budget is past the $1 billion mark, putting it in the elite company of UC San Diego (#5) and the University of Michigan (#13). Of course, UW’s location in Seattle, WA, has put it at the center of an exploding tech job market, making it an ideal location for graduate engineers. One of the best engineering schools in the nation, UW is also the prime location for start-ups developed out of student research, so you need not go to work for someone else – start your own thing, and you’ll find the University of Washington more than a value.
University of Pennsylvania
Founded by Benjamin Franklin, the father of modern science in the US, the University of Pennsylvania knows engineering. Like Cornell, Penn is unusual among the Ivy League for its commitment to the applied sciences and engineering, as well as its commitment to inclusion and diversity, according to the Penn Compact. Penn offers numerous graduate degrees in engineering, especially in computer engineering, robotics, and nanotechnology, and a significant ROI that counters its elite, Ivy League tuition.
Caltech is known for two things: their tradition of pranking cross-country rivals MIT; and being the most elite polytechnic institute on the west coast. While the pranks may be fun (and blow off steam for students undergoing the serious challenges of a Caltech education), it’s the latter that keeps Caltech on the top of every engineering ranking. And the factor that makes Caltech a value is its financial aid. While the tuition cost makes Caltech look unapproachable, its desire for the very best students has led them to develop significant financial aid systems that make sure anyone accepted can get their tuition paid. So if you can make it in, don’t worry about paying – an average ROI of over $900,000 will take care of any incidentals.
Missouri S&T University
If the name doesn’t give it away, the Missouri University of Science & Technology is a STEM-concentrated public university in Rolla, MO. Known for their engineering school, Missouri S&T has made a name for themselves through the Student Design & Experiential Learning Center, a research center that has made Missouri S&T dominant in student design contests. Graduate students can earn degrees in highly specialized, unusual concentrations such as Ceramics Engineering and Explosives Engineering, or in Geological, Metallurgical, or Mining Engineering (the fields that began Missouri S&T), as well as in numerous other specializations. Missouri S&T combines polytechnic expertise with affordable public tuition rates, making it a top graduate investment.
University of Iowa
The University of Iowa may be best known for the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, a legendary program that has educated more than a dozen Pulitzer Prize winners, but its College of Engineering is a hidden triumph. With more than twenty labs, four research centers, and interdisciplinary studies, the College of Engineering is responsible for much of the scientific research that goes on in the state of Iowa. Graduate study is incredibly low-priced at less than $10,000 per year, and students can count on a quality of education that ranks with any large public university, making Iowa a perfect dark horse investment in your graduate engineering degree.
Carnegie Mellon University
While too young to be an Ivy League school, Carnegie Mellon University has the reputation and quality to be called a New Ivy. Founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1900, the school that would eventually become Carnegie Mellon was intended to provide technical training for blue-collar Pittsburgh, PA, but today Carnegie Mellon is known for their elite STEM education and research, especially in technology and computers (they were, in fact, one of the first universities to build a website). Carnegie Mellon’s graduate engineering is ranked as the fourth best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, and the College of Engineering in general is a perennial top 10. With a strong belief in interdisciplinary study and research, Carnegie Mellon’s graduate students are well prepared for the contemporary world of research and work.
University of Utah
As one of the first four nodes of the ARPANET, the University of Utah was present at the birth of the internet and has continued to lead the way in technology, computing, and engineering. The University of Utah’s College of Engineering is rapidly rising in reputation, with nationally-recognized programs in biomedical engineering, computer engineering, and more. As their research production has grown exponentially, so has their list of accomplished alumni. Graduate students are an integral part of that growth, and Utah’s affordable tuition makes the investment in a University of Utah engineering degree a solid value.
Arizona State University
While Arizona State University is not the highest-ranked public university in the US, it is recognized by U.S. News & World Report as the most innovative; ASU’s reputation for experimentation, challenge, and positive development has made it a watchword among research universities. The Fulton Schools of Engineering have contributed to that reputation with their forward-thinking research and their commitment to providing education across the southwest (also contributing to ASU’s status as the largest public university by student body). Graduate students in the Fulton Schools will carry that reputation for innovation with them into a competitive market that rewards original thinking and experimentation.
North Carolina State University
Before Silicon Valley, there was the Research Triangle, a region in central North Carolina anchored by the University of North Carolina, Duke University, and North Carolina State University, that attracted IBM, SAS, Cisco, and more beginning in the 1950s. NCSU has been a leader in engineering for generations, with the Centennial Campus providing a model for the future of engineering as academic, government, and corporate research comes together. Graduate students will emerge to a healthy job market for engineers, with the Triangle being one of the regions that best recovered from the recession of 2008. Add a reasonable public-university tuition rate, and graduate engineering students will be hard pressed to find a better value.
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
The University of Minnesota Twin Cities has a lot to brag about: their College of Engineering is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best, with more than 20 research centers including a state of the art nanotechnology lab and a superfast electron microscope. With a wealth of research expertise and copious corporate partnerships, it’s no surprise UM engineering grads have a 92% job placement rating. The Twin Cities are rapidly taking their place alongside other major engineering and tech hubs, so UM graduate engineering students can expect a healthy return on a reasonable investment.
An Ivy League rival of Cornell (#16) and Penn (#21), Columbia University is one of the most selective of the Ivies, as well as one of the most diverse. Like its peers, Columbia extends generous financial aid to its students in the effort to attract the best and brightest, regardless of their ability to pay. In addition to being one of the Colonial Colleges founded before the Revolutionary War, Columbia is also home to one of the first schools on engineering. Today the Fu Foundation School of Engineering & Applied Sciences is a leader in engineering, with an impressive number of patents from faculty and a high research budget, giving Columbia graduate engineering students a major advantage in both quality of education, and marketability of the Columbia brand.
Iowa State University
Its full name, even if no one uses it, is the Iowa State University of Science & Technology, which should give you some indication of where Iowa State’s priorities lie. Regarded as one of the best engineering schools in the US (U.S. News & World Report top 25), Iowa State has a Carnegie Foundation very high research status and one of the highest rates of intellectual property claims, meaning graduate students at the Iowa State have access to a significant amount of new and futuristic research, especially in biosciences, energy, and sustainability. And Iowa State graduates have a 95% job placement rating, making a graduate engineering degree from Iowa State a smart bet.
University of Maryland, College Park
Highly ranked by U.S. News & World Report, the Princeton Review, and others, the University of Maryland, College Park has turned its location into its greatest advantage by developing deep, significant connections with government agencies in nearby Washington, DC. Relationships with NASA, the NSA, and Homeland Security, among many others, means research in fields such as aerospace engineering and cybersecurity are second to none, and directly tied to real results. UMCP’s network also means increased career prospects, so even if it were not an affordable public university, a graduate degree from UMCP would be an investment soon to make a return.
University of California, Davis
Perhaps no state has a higher concentration of great engineering programs than California. Ranked as a top 20 engineering school by U.S. News & World Report, UC Davis joins its fellow UC system schools, Berkeley, San Diego, LA, and Santa Barbara, as well as Caltech and Stanford, on the Best Value list. Davis is distinguished as one of the best colleges for getting a job in Silicon Valley, thanks to proximity and partnerships, as well as one of the best engineering schools for women. The Davis location is further distinguished for being consistently ranked as a best place to live and a top college town, adding quality of life to quality of education for a top value.
Polytechnic institutes almost universally offer graduates high ROIs, since they combine excellence in education, recognized reputations, and high marketability. And while most polytechnics are private and expensive, the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University combines the best of the polytechnic (reputation) with the best of the public (reasonable tuition). Virginia Tech’s College of Engineering offers graduate students many flexible degree programs in highly desired areas that have been ranked in the top 20 for graduate education by U.S. News & World Report. The Virginia Tech reputation is competitive in the job market as well, making Tech one of the best all-around values in the nation.
University of Arizona
The University of Arizona is located in Tucson, in a region called the tech corridor of Arizona, where aerospace and homeland security research, solar energy and water conservation, and computing all represent the cutting edge of engineering. Residential students will appreciate the quality of life, with Tucson’s hiking, biking, and entertainment, but the opportunity to take part in significant research projects is the main factor that brings graduate students to the top-ranked UA College of Engineering. Arizona residents pay an affordable $12,000 per year in tuition, a bargain for a degree that can provide a high salary and ROI.
Rice University is a small Houston, TX university that does research that rivals the big guns: typically ranked among the finest universities in the world, Rice is also a top business incubator and a leader in applied sciences. The Brown School of Engineering benefits greatly from Rice’s location in Houston, from energy and space exploration to medicine and computer technology, building relationships with area corporations to give graduate students access to the very highest of high-tech research. Small teacher to student ratios mean students have direct contact with professors and take significant roles in research. While Rice’s tuition, as a private institution, is closer to the Ivies than the publics, generous assistantships and other financial aid offset the costs and make Rice a superior value.
Auburn University’s Samuel Ginn College of Engineering is a major contributor to the technology and applied sciences in Alabama, educating more than a third of the engineers in the state and committed to fueling Alabama’s industry and economic development. While the Ginn College has historically been a top 20 undergraduate engineering school, recent years have seen Auburn turning its attention to graduate study, with the graduate engineering program steadily rising in the rankings thanks to an ambitious plan to raise Ginn’s research profile and expenditures to over $100 million. A degree in engineering from Auburn, then, is an investment in the future of a program that has big ideas and ambition – just like you.
University of Southern California
The University of Southern California is one of the most distinguished institutions in the US, counting numerous Nobel Prize, MacArthur Fellows, and Rhodes Scholars among its faculty and alumni, as well as an unusually high proportion of billionaire alumni. Not surprisingly, the Viterbi School of Engineering is ranked in the top 10 by U.S. News & World Report and educates twice as many graduate students as undergraduate, making USC one of the best choices for graduate engineering study. Graduates can count on high marketability and a wealth of options thanks to USC’s Los Angeles location, which opens up career opportunities not only in the west coast but in the Pacific Rim as well.
University of Virginia
While Virginia Tech (#34) may be better known for engineering and applied science, the University of Virginia brings its own kind of value. As a Public Ivy and one of the most respected public universities in the US, UVA has the name recognition and reputation that makes a UVA degree exceptionally valuable on the job market. UVA graduates have an average starting salary of nearly $70,000, with many offers much higher, further proof that the UVA name carries serious weight. With U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review rankings as a top university and a top value, UVA is an investment that will not disappoint.
Colorado School of Mines
Colorado School of Mines is a small, public, research university with one mission: further engineering and applied science in the Rocky Mountains and beyond. Mines, as it’s known, was founded in Golden, CO as a school for miners, and has developed over the past century and a half into a STEM institution with consistently high rankings, an impressive research budget, and an ROI that puts the Ivy League to shame. For graduate students interested in engineering – especially energy and geological engineering – there are few better choices than a school centered on the subject, with career prospects that very few others can deliver.
Stanford University is the most selective institution in the US, turning away applicants at higher frequency than even the Ivy League and major polytechnics like MIT and Caltech. A lot of that has to do with location: Stanford, CA just happens to be next door to Silicon Valley. Or, more accurately, Silicon Valley is right next door to Stanford, since without Stanford, there would likely be no such place. The spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship that led Stanford faculty and alumni to create the Valley continues today, and those graduate engineering students exceptional enough to get in gain access not only to one of the most prestigious educational institutions in the world, but to a career that many can only dream of.
The Ohio State University
The Ohio State University College of Engineering has done an extraordinary job in recent years of introducing students to the contemporary world of engineering. Ranked in the top 15 engineering schools by U.S. News & World Report, OSU is also one of the highest ranked for industry-sponsored research, meaning that graduate students at OSU are exposed to the real work of engineers in corporate and industry settings, not to mention gaining access to employment opportunities through these many partnerships. With affordable tuition from this public university, students can count on a healthy ROI, making Ohio State engineering a best value graduate degree.
Oklahoma State University
Oklahoma State University was founded in Stillwater, OK as the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College, and applied science has been OSU’s mission ever since. The College of Engineering, Architecture, and Technology is proud to note that the very first graduate of OSU was an engineering major. In addition to being a land-grant university, OSU is one of only five congressional sun-grant universities researching renewable and sustainable energy. Graduate students can expect a top-notch education and experience in significant new research at a low tuition rate, making OSU a sensible investment in your future career, and the future of technology.
University of Connecticut
A consistently ranked top public university, best value, and Public Ivy, University of Connecticut needs little introduction. What may be less known is that, as a founding institution in the New England Knowledge Corridor, UConn is a major economic and entrepreneurial force in the region, contributing not only jobs but a high level of research and business startups throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts. As UConn’s corporate partnerships and research grow, so too does the School of Engineering, which is bringing in higher numbers of students every year. UConn engineering is on the rise, a good time to consider investing in a graduate degree.
A large research university with one the biggest endowments of any public institution, Northwestern University makes the best of its locations in Evanston and Chicago, IL. The McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science is perfectly situated in proximity to the industrial and business hub of the Chicago metropolitan area, giving students exceptional opportunities for internships and employment. This entrepreneurial environment means excellent prospects for graduate students, and the chance to make an excellent ROI out of a top-tier education.
University of Florida
The University of Florida has a solid record of high marks from U.S. News & World Report as one of the best public universities in the nation, with many of the College of Engineering’s individual programs scoring in the top 20, top 15, and better. The College of Engineering is engaged in key research, such as the School of Sustainable Infrastructure & Environment’s oceanic research, and the Department of Bioengineering’s neuroengineering studies. Graduate students take part in this cutting-edge work, building experience and reputation that will bring success in the engineering field and make a University of Florida graduate degree in engineering a top value.
Penn State University
Like the University of Florida, Penn State’s College of Engineering is a consistent top-20 ranking institution, and one of the largest with over 10,000 undergrad and graduate students. Students flock to Penn State for its reputed quality and affordability, and Penn State has set its sights on the future, with special focus on cybersecurity, medical manufacturing, infrastructure, and sustainability, the most significant challenges facing engineers in coming years. Penn State also offers an unusual and innovative engineering program in acoustics, an interdisciplinary program specializing in sound. This kind of original thinking makes Penn State a highly desired degree.
Johns Hopkins University
Graduate students at Johns Hopkins University’s Whiting School of Engineering benefit from the unique advantages of the Johns Hopkins name – one of the most respected in higher education – and from the excellence of Johns Hopkins’ faculty. A high research budget and small faculty to student ratio means graduate students get to participate in exceptional research, especially in biomedical engineering (in concert with Johns Hopkins’ medical complex). Further, Johns Hopkins’ location in Baltimore provides close proximity to Washington DC and New York City for the job market, where a Johns Hopkins degree has a high marketability.
Michigan State University
Michigan State University’s College of Engineering has made its reputation in recent years with important research in energy, materials, and automotive engineering, with large grant funding from the NSF and industry corporations. East Lansing, Michigan’s proximity to major manufacturing and industrial areas means that graduates have access to career opportunities and research experience with real-world applications. An affordable tuition rate increases the value of a Michigan State graduate engineering degree.
Mississippi State University
Closing out the top 50 Best Value Graduate Engineering Programs, Mississippi State University, in Starksville, MS, is one of the most significant public research universities in the deep south, with a very high research status from the Carnegie Foundation. The full name, which includes Agriculture and Applied Science, indicates MSU’s priorities, with the Bagley College of Engineering providing leadership in the applied sciences. As a deep south institution, the Bagley College has made a concentrated effort to attract African-American students, underrepresented in engineering, as well as women. With a strategic plan to increase their standing and reputation, Mississippi State is a college on the way up, making it a smart choice for investing in a graduate engineering degree.