Application fees generate thousands, millions for some colleges, study shows

Students across the country are busily preparing the application packets they'll send to the institutions of higher education they hope to attend in the coming fall. 

Besides the stress and time it takes to complete and disburse these materials, applicants almost always pay a fee to the schools as well. Some colleges charge as little as $10 for an application fee, while some charge closer to $200, with the standard being around $50, according to LendEDU, an education financing company.

As those fees compile from the hundreds or thousands of students who hope to gain entrance to college, schools can accrue a significant amount of revenue, often in the millions of dollars.

LendEDU assembled a list of the 500 colleges that make the most money from total application revenue generated by prospective students. Many well known, prestigious schools populate the list, and many state university systems also appear, a logical conclusion as the most desirous schools or those who service students from populous states stand to make considerable revenue from a deluge of applications and their requisite fees.

Six schools from the University of California system occupy the top six spots on LendEDU's list of most revenue from total applications, with UC Los Angeles taking the top spot, earning $6,797,840 from 97,112 applications that require a $70 fee each. Cornell University generated the most of any Ivy League school, totaling $3,597,200 off of 44,965 applications that each carry an $80 fee.

Several Maryland schools are scattered among the top 500 as well, with the state's eponymous institution landing in the top 50:

  • No. 44 University of Maryland-College Park - $2,271,825 ($75 fee, 30,291 applications)
  • No. 53 Johns Hopkins University - $1,949,640 ($70 fee, 27,852 applications)
  • No. 176 Loyola University Maryland - $763,620 ($60 fee, 12,727 applications)
  • No. 237 Towson University - $535,365 ($45 fee, 11,897 applications)
  • No. 232 University of Maryland, Baltimore County - $540,600 ($50 fee, 10,812 applications)
  • No. 305 Salisbury University - $415,350 ($50 fee, 8,307 applications)
  • No. 345 Washington College - $336,000 ($50 fee, 6,720 applications)
  • No. 407 Bowie State University - $269,400 ($40 fee, 6,735 applications)
  • No. 428 University of Maryland Eastern Shore - $255,775 ($25 fee, 10,231 applications)
  • No. 440 Maryland Institute College of Art - $243,250 ($70 fee, 3,475 applications)
  • No. 450 Stevenson University - $234,240 ($40 fee, 5,856 applications)
  • No. 454 Coppin State University - $230,600 ($50 fee, 4,612 applications)
  • No. 469 Morgan State University - $214,060 ($35 fee, 6,116 applications)

 

 

 

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