Paying for College

Are Ivies Worth the Cost?

Question: I am a junior and have a very strong GPA and SAT scores. My guidance counselor told me I could definitely get into an Ivy League school--which i would love to do--but that I could get a full scholarship at a lower-ranked school. My parents make a decent living, so we probably wouldn't get a whole lot of aid, but we can't afford an Ivy League tuition on our own. Is the debt and outside scholarship work worth it, or should I go to a less prestigious school? Would the Ivy League education make a difference in the end, or would the debt outweigh the benefits?

This is a good question but it's also one where, if you ask it 100 different times, you'll probably get 100 replies, and they'll all sound like cop-outs. That is, there are no easy answers, and the best is probably "It depends."

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