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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

LU ranks #18 in TX for return of investment

BEAUMONT - by Lauren Huet

If you or your child is looking for a college that offers you bang for your buck, a new study ranks Lamar University number 18 out of 69 Texas universities. The study by PayScale reports Lamar students will pay about $97,520 for a college education at Lamar.

The report compares the cost of a college education to the students' return of investment in 20 years. College students will tell you, money is tight.

"I mean financial aid really doesn't give you what you want, it's just what you need I guess," said LU freshman Precious Duru. "And if you don't have a job, you're basically on your own if your parents don't help you."

That's why, it's good to know it will pay off.

"All the studies on college degreed individuals versus high schooled degreed individuals virtually without exception demonstrate that a college degree pays off," said LU President Dr. Kenneth Evans.

The study by PayScale reports, Lamar students' 20-year return of investment is $352,000. PayScale calculated LU's return of investment by subtracting the total income the graduate will earn in 20 years, minus what they would have earned as a high school graduate, minus the total cost of college (which includes room and board, tuition, books and supplies).

"352,000 dollars in the next few years sounds like something I'm interested in," said LU freshman Kyle Brown.

"You know as a college student money's tight, so knowing that we spend that much is depressing," said LU freshman Kamaria Roberts, "but knowing that it'll pay off later is, it's worth it."

Dr. Evans says LU offers degrees in high demand industries.

"We have done a marvelous job of serving not just the constituency of Southeast Texas, but the state of Texas and in some cases border states, with either our online product or our face to face product in areas that are in high demand," said Dr. Evans.

A product he says comes at a lower cost to students than many other colleges.

 "And then on top of that finding the jobs that they're able to get at the end of the day is a point of pride. There's no question about it," said Dr. Evans.

The PayScale study also found Lamar University has a 32 percent graduation rate. Dr. Evans says graduation rates include students who graduate within 6 years. Many Lamar students work full-time and take longer than 6 years to graduate.


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