2021 Best Colleges in Kentucky by Salary Score
This list of the best Kentucky universities ranked by Salary Scores offers students a look at how each school stacks up against all other U.S. colleges in terms of alumni salary by major for a bachelor's degree. The Salary Score acts as an indicator of how well alumni at a specific college fare in their first year after graduation compared to others from the same field of study. We developed these scores by comparing median alumni earnings for graduates from a certain major at a college to alumni salaries from the same programs at other universities. We then compiled these program scores into an overall Salary Score to show how well a given college prepares alumni for high-paying jobs, regardless of what they study. Kentucky has a lower than average cost of living, so alumni who work in-state may have lower salaries in line with lower living expenses. Even with a lower cost of living, Thomas More University had a higher Salary Score than the median for colleges in the United States.
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 Kentucky. You can click on a school's name to view individual program scores. Read our methodology to learn more about how schools were ranked.
|Rank||School||Annual Tuition||Salary Score|
|#1||Thomas More University Multiple Locations||Multiple Locations||$32,090||69.46|
|#2||Sullivan University Louisville||Louisville||$11,520||49.68|
|#3||University of Louisville Louisville||Louisville||$11,928||48.52|
|#4||Northern Kentucky University Highland Heights||Highland Heights||$10,296||44.67|
|#5||University of Kentucky Lexington||Lexington||$12,360||33.47|
|#6||Bellarmine University Louisville||Louisville||$42,830||32.92|
|#7||Asbury University Wilmore||Wilmore||$30,952||26.89|
|#8||Eastern Kentucky University Richmond||Richmond||$9,876||26.37|
|#9||Western Kentucky University Bowling Green||Bowling Green||$10,802||24.76|
|#10||University of the Cumberlands Williamsburg||Williamsburg||$9,875||22.69|
|#11||Murray State University Murray||Murray||$9,168||22.39|
|#12||Morehead State University Morehead||Morehead||$9,290||20.30|
|#13||Kentucky State University Frankfort||Frankfort||$8,090||13.65|
|#14||Berea College Berea||Berea||$44,700||13.61|
|#15||Lindsey Wilson College Columbia||Columbia||$25,350||12.08|
2021 Best Colleges in Kentucky Highlights
Five of the nine bachelor's programs at Thomas More University have a Salary Score above 80, with the liberal arts and sciences, general studies, and humanities program topping the list with a score of 97. Of the five top-rated fields, graduates of the business administration, management, and operations program report the highest median salary, at $52,610. With a score of 90, the health and physical education/fitness program features the second highest Salary Score. Alumni from this program report median earnings of $36,400 in their first year out of college.
Thomas More University is a small, private Catholic institution in Crestview Hills, a small town just south of the Ohio border. It has a student-to-faculty ratio of 15:1 and offers online and on-campus programs. Students at Thomas More have access to various scholarships and all incoming students attending full-time, campus-based programs receive financial aid from the university. Students can take part in optional faculty-led study abroad and service-learning opportunities.
The bachelor's program with the highest Salary Score at Sullivan University is business administration, management and operations, scoring a 71. Graduates of this program report a median salary of $47,900 in their first year out of college. With a score of 65, the business/commerce program has the second highest Salary Score. The median annual salary for this program is $48,040. The program with the overall highest median salary after graduation is computer and information sciences, at $53,780.
Sullivan University is a small, private, for-profit institution with four campuses. The main campus is in Louisville, and additional centers are located in Lexington, Fort Knox, and Louisa. Programs at Sullivan University are focused on training students in the skills they need to start careers in the areas of health, business, hospitality, technology, and law. The Ft. Knox campus provides a special focus on educating active duty military, veterans, and their families stationed in the area. Sullivan also provides dedicated resources to military students, including a reduced tuition rate and an on-campus military liaison.
The program with the highest Salary Score at the University of Louisville is teacher education and professional development, specific subject areas, which scores a 97. Graduates of this program report a median salary of $46,870 in the year after graduation. Anthropology is the second-highest rated program, with a score of 85. It has a median annual salary of $31,850. The program with the highest overall median salary is chemical engineering, at $71,580.
The University of Louisville is a large, public university located in Louisville, Kentucky. The student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1, and the school offers both online and on-campus programs. A wide variety of scholarships are available in multiple categories based on financial need, academic merit, or athletic performance. Students at the university can choose from an array of study abroad programs, and there are also scholarships available specifically for students who wish to study abroad.