The benefits of attending a highly selective college

1) Hidden Job Opportunities:  

“When an employment recruiter looks at an Ivy League degree, they will usually look at it more carefully,” says Elena Bajic, founder and CEO of Ivy Exec, an online executive job search site. “An Ivy League education makes a candidate stand out, even before a recruiter talks to them.”  (CNBC, “Education and You”) 


2) A Robust Peer-Network: 

Highly selective schools provide a social network that other schools can’t duplicate, according to Brian Eberman, CEO of, an education comparison site. “From an undergraduate perspective, the primary advantage of Harvard or Yale is the connections that college creates between the students and their peers,” Eberman explains. “Those connections can be quite valuable over time when it comes to jobs and salaries.”


3) Increased Lifetime Earnings:  

In 2010, the top earners among Yale graduates typically earned $326,000 per year, while the best-paid graduates of Kent Sate University, a very respectable public university in Ohio, earned on average $124,000.  Extrapolated over the course of an entire career, the average difference in lifetime earnings is well into hundreds of thousands of dollars.  As the following table from Busisness Week demonstrates, there is a very strong link between college selectivity and earnings.  (, Bloomberg Business Week &

4) Personal Development: 

Lastly, the most underrated, but most valuable aspect of attending a highly selective college -- personal development.  Students at selective colleges are more likely to be pushed by their professors and peers to explore their potential.  Whether it be by studying abroad to widen personal horizons, working with a professor who wrote a seminal text in their area of study, or achieving a greater understanding of what one wants to do in life, it’s very difficult to put a price tag on the experience of attending the college of your dreams.