2021 Best Colleges in Idaho by Salary Score
This list features the best schools in Idaho ranked by Salary Score, an indicator of how alumni salaries from a particular college compare to alumni salaries for graduates with the same majors at other colleges. To determine this score we compared median alumni earnings in the first year after graduation for each major at one college to alumni earnings for the same major across all schools. We then combined the scores from all majors to create an overall Salary Score for that school. The three top-ranked colleges in Idaho are all public institutions: Boise State University, the University of Idaho, and Lewis-Clark State College.
To be considered for our state rankings, schools must offer and provide data for at least 8 bachelor's programs. This list includes all eligible schools in Idaho. You can click on a school's name to view individual program scores. Read our methodology to learn more about how schools were ranked.
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2021 Best Colleges in Idaho Highlights
The program at Boise State University with the highest Salary Score is business/managerial economics, with a score of 94. The high score indicates that graduates of this program, who have a median annual salary of $63,010, generally earn more than alumni of the same programs at other schools. Other top programs include chemistry (93), anthropology (87), and social work (84). The program with the highest median salary is computer science, at $74,310 annually.
Boise State University (BSU) is a large, public university located in Boise, Idaho. Boise State offers a unique program called the Bronco Gap Year, which allows students to take time off from school while they gain real-world experience and earn BSU credit through a unique educational experience. Students choose an emphasis area and spend one or two terms exploring their academic and career interests before beginning or continuing their studies at BSU. Some of the available emphasis areas include social entrepreneurship, education, and public service. The cost of the program is less than regular courses at the university.
Some of the programs at the University of Idaho with the highest Salary Scores are in the field of business. The business administration, management, and operations program scores a 95, while the agricultural business and management program scores a 91. Other high-scoring programs include foods, nutrition, and related services (89) and design and applied arts (81). The program with the highest salary is computer science, with graduates reporting a median annual salary of $75,200. Alumni from the top scoring business administration program report annual earnings of $57,320.
The University of Idaho is a mid-sized, public university located in Moscow, a small town in northern Idaho right on the border of Washington. It is the biggest research university in Idaho. Students who are looking for a career in agriculture may be interested in the university's extensive agricultural research centers, where they can study everything from beef production to potato growing. Students from certain states, most of which are located in the north or southwest United States, can attend the University of Idaho at a discounted, out-of-state student rate as part of the Western Undergraduate Exchange program.
The two programs with the highest Salary Scores at Lewis-Clark State College are criminal justice and corrections, with a score of 59, and psychology, with a score of 57. The scores indicate that alumni from these programs have earnings that are above average when compared to alumni of similar programs at other schools. The field with the highest salary is nursing. Alumni from this program, which has a Salary Score of 50, report annual median earnings of $65,590.
Lewis-Clark State College is a small, public university located in the urban city of Lewiston, near the Washington state border. In addition to providing the lowest tuition rates of all public four-year colleges in Idaho, 82% of students receive financial aid. A variety of scholarships and waivers for out-of-state students are among the awards available. Though a small school, there are many opportunities available for students to get involved on campus, including the student newspaper, The Pathfinder, a student-run radio station, and the literary journal Talking River Review.