News & Events / Data Show Strong Return on Investment for UNC Grads

Data Show Strong Return on Investment for UNC Grads

Published Nov 21, 2023

By Kathryn Palmer, Inside Higher Ed

The cost of obtaining a degree from any of the University of North Carolina System’s 16 universities is worth it, according to a study that examined return on investment between 2015 and 2020 for the 724 undergraduate programs and 575 graduate programs across the UNC System.

Graduates who complete an undergraduate degree at one of the UNC System’s universities have a median lifetime return on investment of $500,000 compared to North Carolinians without undergraduate degrees. And completing a degree resulted in upward economic mobility for nearly 90 percent of students from low-income backgrounds.

“The evidence is clear: bachelor’s degree recipients from the UNC System fare better in lifetime earnings than fellow state residents without degrees. Robust state investment in postsecondary education is a winning strategy that yields substantial benefits for students and their surrounding communities,” Diane Cheng, IHEP’s vice president of research and policy, said in an email. “By shining a light on post-college earnings and outcomes, other states and systems can make the case for deeper investments that help ensure every student has the opportunity to access postsecondary education and complete a credential.”

Read the full article at Inside Higher Ed.

Photo Courtesy of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.