2021 Best Colleges in Maine Badge

2021 Best Colleges in Maine by Salary Score

By the GradReports team | Updated 3/1/2021

We ranked the best schools in Maine using our Salary Score to show how each school stacks up in terms of alumni salary by major for a bachelor's degree. Our Salary Score acts as an indicator of whether degrees from a given college tend to lead to better financial outcomes for alumni compared to the same degrees from schools across the country. To calculate our Salary Score, we compared median alumni salaries in the year after graduation for each program to salary data for the same programs at other universities. A high Salary Score indicates that overall, alumni at the school tended to earn higher salaries compared to alumni with the same major at other colleges. Colby College, Bowdoin College, and Bates College all scored in the top 25% of eligible U.S. colleges and universities.

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 Maine. 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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Our Salary Score™ is based on data reported by the U.S. Department of Education
Rank School Location Annual Tuition Salary Score
#1 #1 Colby College Waterville Waterville $63,520 87.64
#2 #2 Bowdoin College Brunswick Brunswick $61,528 87.41
#3 #3 Bates College Lewiston Lewiston $61,066 77.67
#4 #4 Saint Joseph's College of Maine Standish Standish $41,586 44.35
#5 #5 University of New England Biddeford Biddeford $40,950 43.21
#6 #6 University of Southern Maine Portland Portland $10,120 42.11
#7 #7 University of Maine Orono Orono $12,136 41.18
#8 #8 Husson University Bangor (and 1 other) Bangor (and 1 other) $21,090 36.77
#9 #9 University of Maine at Augusta Augusta Augusta $8,378 32.42
#10 #10 University of Maine at Farmington Farmington Farmington $9,890 28.67

2021 Best Colleges in Maine Highlights

Salary Score 87.64
Annual Tuition $63,520
Graduation Rate 88%

All of the bachelor's programs at Colby College have a Salary Score above average, meaning that graduates of programs from this school tend to make more than students graduating from similar programs at other schools. The program area with the highest Salary Score is psychology, scoring a 100. Other highly rated programs include political science and government (94), and romance languages, literature, and linguistics (91). The program with the highest median salary for new graduates is economics, at $59,690. Alumni from the history program, which has a Salary Score of 74, report a median salary of $35,060 in their first post-graduate year.

School Overview

Colby College is a small, private, non-profit institution located in Waterville, a small college town near the capital city of Augusta. The college offers the Colby Commitment, which pledges that all students will have 100% of their financial need covered without loans. Undergraduate students have the opportunity to partake in research through various programs at the college. For example, the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences partnership allows students to take part in the Changing Oceans Semester Program, where they live and work at the Bigelow Laboratory campus while gaining real-world experience in oceanography and researching climate change.

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Salary Score 87.41
Annual Tuition $61,528
Graduation Rate 94%

The program areas with the top three highest Salary Score at Bowdoin College are biology, with a score of 100, political science and government, scoring a 97, and economics, with a score of 91. Of these three programs, the one that has the highest annual median salary for new graduates is economics, with alumni reporting earnings of $64,000 in their first post-graduate year. The program area with the highest overall median salary is computer science, at $78,970.

School Overview

Bowdoin College is a small, private, non-profit school located in Brunswick, a small coastal city less than an hour from Portland. The college offers “need-blind” admission, meaning that a student’s ability to pay for college is not a deciding factor in any admission decision. Bowdoin works to be affordable, and around half of admitted students get some type of financial aid. The average grant amount received by students is about $47,500.

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Salary Score 77.67
Annual Tuition $61,066
Graduation Rate 92%

At Bates College, the bachelor's program with the highest Salary Score is history, with a score of 99. Alumni from this program report a median annual starting salary of $47,260. Other programs with high a Salary Score include political science and government, scoring a 98, and economics, scoring a 90. The economics program also has the highest overall median salary, with graduates reporting first-year earnings of $63,750. Alumni of the history program report earnings of $47,260 in their first year out of college.

School Overview

Bates College is a small, private, non-profit school located in Lewiston, a mid-sized city less than an hour from both Augusta and Portland. The school has a student-to-faculty ratio of 10:1. The college is committed to meeting 100% of financial need for the entire four years of a student's academic program. Institutional grants were awarded to 41% of students admitted to the class of 2023; the average need-based award was $47,051.

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