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Rank: 64

George Mason University

George Mason University is extremely diverse, with a large international contingent representing about 130 countries. GMU is a relatively new university, beginning as a branch of the University of Virginia in the '50s and splitting off into its own institution in 1972. It's named after a founding father. The campus, in suburban Fairfax, is about 15 miles from Washington, D.C. Once a largely commuter school, GMU now requires that freshmen live on campus, and it has grown into the largest public university in Virginia, with some 35,000 students, about 25,000 of them undergraduates. It offers more than 80 undergraduate majors in its 10 schools and colleges. GMU fields 20 men's and women's teams in Division I sports, including baseball, basketball, lacrosse, soccer, softball, and track and field. Prospective students not into sports can check out the more than 350 clubs. GMU's graduation rate of 71% is about 15% higher than schools with similar student populations, according to MONEY's findings. Recent grads often do well in the job market, earning an average of $57,200 per year in the early stages of their careers -- about 11% higher than graduates from similar universities.
costs
Est. Full Price 2019-2020
$30,500
% of students who get any grants
49%
Est. price for students who receive aid
$19,900
Average price for low-income students
$14,910
admissions
Acceptance rate
81%
Median SAT/ACT Score
1200/27
SAT/ACT required?
Yes
Enrollment
24,395
Financial Aid
% of students with need who get grants
82%
% of need met
54%
% of students who get merit* grants
8%
Average merit grant
$3,968
student success
Graduation rate
71%
Average time to a degree
4.4 years
Average student debt
$19,500
Average salary within 3 years
$57,200
% of low-income students who become upper middle class
50%
key deadlines
Early decision application
Nov 1
Regular application
Jan 15

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Opportunity Insights.

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Opportunity Insights.

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