Best Value Colleges in Michigan

A college education is an important factor in lifelong earnings. Unfortunately, college is also incredibly expensive. Here, we share a few of the best value colleges in Michigan.

The perceived value of a college education is changing, especially as the cost of attending college seems to be increasing exponentially. Parents and students are taking a long look at exactly what a college education will provide, weighing the cost and, in many cases, seeking out the best value colleges in Michigan.

According to research from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, attending college is still the means to a higher-paying career overall. But in an interesting twist, the organization also reports that 16% of workers with high school diplomas and 28% of workers with an associate degree earn more than 50% of workers with a bachelor’s degree. 

In short, more education doesn’t always get you more money.

This data deserves a closer look because there are vast differences in earning potential based on field of study, geographic location, race and ethnicity, and even gender. 

Generally speaking, workers with a college degree earn more over a lifetime than those with a high school diploma. According to Georgetown’s research, an associate degree translates to an increase in lifetime earnings by 25% and a bachelor’s degree translates to a 75% increase.

Like any other substantial purchase, it makes sense to shop around and find the best value for your educational investment. 

What are the best value colleges in Michigan?

Here in Michigan, we are lucky to have some of the best colleges and universities in the country, and many of them offer great value for students. No matter where your child is on the path to higher education, reviewing prices for tuition and housing is a worthwhile exercise.

Bear in mind that value means different things to different people — and every family has different goals and expected outcomes. By doing your research, you and your student can find a college that offers great value and meets your family’s needs.

Here are a few of the best value colleges and universities in Michigan for the 2023-2024 school year, based on tuition and fees, room and board and academic quality:

Grand Valley State University is a public university in Allendale known for its affordable tuition, strong academics and commitment to student success. GVSU offers more than 200 undergraduate majors and programs and boasts a strong alumni network. The average tuition and fees for in-state students at GVSU is $14,978 for the 2023-2024 school year. Room and board is an additional $11,142.

Kettering University is a private university in Flint that offers degrees in engineering, business and technology. Kettering is known for its strong academic programs and its focus on hands-on learning, plus a robust co-op program that puts students directly into companies to gain valuable work experience and earn income at the same time. The average tuition and fees for in-state students at Kettering is $46,380 for the 2023-2024 school year. Room and board is an additional $9,500.

Michigan Technological University is a public university in Houghton that offers degrees in engineering, science and technology. Michigan Tech is known for its strong engineering program and its beautiful campus, which is in the Upper Peninsula. The average tuition and fees for in-state students at Michigan Tech is $18,074 for the 2023-2024 school year. Room and board is an additional $12,744.

Lawrence Technological University is a private university in Southfield that offers degrees in engineering, business and design. Lawrence Tech is known for its strong engineering program and its focus on experiential learning — and LTU prides itself on its ROI, claiming to be in the top 11% in the country. The average tuition and fees for in-state students at Lawrence Tech is $41,150 for the 2023-2024 school year, and varies by the field of study. Room and board is an additional $11,670.

Oakland University is a public university in Rochester that offers degrees in a wide range of fields. Oakland is known for its strong academic programs and claims to be the only university in Michigan that does not charge additional fees above the cost of tuition. For in-state freshmen, sophomores and online students, the tuition cost is $14,694 for the 2023-2024 school year. Room and board on campus is an additional $11,309.

Because most Michigan students are already familiar with the degree offerings at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and Michigan State University in East Lansing, here are the dollar amounts for these two universities:

University of Michigan Ann Arbor: Freshmen and sophomore in-state tuition for the 2023-2024 school year is $17,228. Room and board is an additional $14,460.

Michigan State University East Lansing: In-state first-year tuition for the 2023-2024 school year is $16,051. Room and board is an additional $11,754.

Content sponsored by Michigan Education Savings Program. Learn more at misaves.com.

Claire Charlton
Claire Charlton
An enthusiastic storyteller, Claire Charlton focuses on delivering top client service as a content editor for Metro Parent. In her 20+ years of experience, she has written extensively on a variety of topics and is keen on new tech and podcast hosting. Claire has two grown kids and loves to read, run, camp, cycle and travel.

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