Cal Poly Named One of Nation’s Best Values by Kiplinger’s Finance Magazine

Cal PolyCal Poly has been named a 2017 best-value college by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, placing 21st in the nation and fourth in the state among public universities and colleges on the magazine’s annual ranking.

Kiplinger’s ranked the top 300 best-value colleges and universities that “offer the best bang for your educational buck” from data culled from nearly 1,200 public and private four-year institutions across the nation.

Cal Poly also ranked 98th overall, among both public and private institutions. Its standings in the top 25 nationally and top four in California make this the university’s best showing in the annual list that the magazine said provide a quality education at an affordable price.

University President Jeffrey D. Armstrong said the announcement underscores the value of Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing educational model.

“We are proud of this recognition, which is further proof that a Cal Poly education is an investment that will provide our students and alumni with a lifetime of dividends,” Armstrong said. “Learn by Doing is no secret to industry. Employers know, and they value Cal Poly graduates for their know-how, leadership skills and ability to adapt and learn throughout their careers.”

The magazine rated each school in five categories: competitiveness, examining the ratio of applicants offered admission to those who actually enroll; graduation rates; academic support, measured by the number of freshmen who return for their sophomore year and the average number of students per faculty member; cost and financial aid; student debt at graduation; and median salary 10 years after graduation.

The rankings focused on traditional four-year schools with broad-based curricula and on-campus student housing. Schools that offered great value but focused on specific or narrow academic programs, such as the military academies, were not included, the magazine said.

According to the Kiplinger, while Cal Poly ranked fourth in the state among public universities for in-state fees, it also placed third in the Golden State for out-of-state student tuition.

To see the complete list of Kiplinger’s top-value institutions, visit