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Sometimes it's better to be a big fish in a small pond

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In one of the worst job markets in years, students are doing everything they can to get the best education for the least amount of money they can. As a result, it seems that the Ivy League has fallen out of favor.

In 2009, 56% of families ruled out colleges based on tuition; that percent rose to 67% in 2013. Yet still one third of students take out loans for school and the underemployment for college grads is at 44%.

Private universities may sport a pretty high price tag, but they still look better than a public university on a resume, right? Well, not necessarily. On average, students who were accepted into Ivy League schools but chose less selective schools earned about the same income as graduates who chose to attend Ivy League. In other words, unless you're going to be the top of your class in Ivy League, than you (and your wallet) may be better off at a public university.

This infographic, courtesy of, shows that sometimes it's best to stand out at your "safety" school after all.


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