Established in 1766, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, is the eighth-oldest higher education institution in the nation and the birthplace of college football.

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The school's flagship location is Rutgers-New Brunswick, which is spread across five campuses in New Brunswick and Piscataway. Rutgers-New Brunswick is huge, with more than 50,000 students, over 120 majors, and 19 schools and colleges. The majority of students are from New Jersey, and about half of alumni still call the Garden State home.

Strongly rooted in liberal arts, Rutgers-New Brunswick lays claim to some of the country's oldest programs in math and classics. Student life is rich — there are more than 750 student groups, including a club where students train puppies to become guide dogs and the country’s second-oldest collegiate newspaper.

Rutgers has a graduation rate of 82%, according to Money's analysis, and students enjoy early-career salaries of nearly $70,000. Plus, students can take advantage of the school's "Scarlet Guarantee": a new program for first- and second-year students that covers up to 100% of the cost of tuition for those who meet the school's income and residency requirements.