Top 10 HBCUs with the Highest Median Earnings

By DeShaun Bennett

With student enrollment numbers decreasing, the cost of attendance increasing, and loan qualification tightening, students and families are becoming more concerned with the financial return on their investments when deciding what college to attend. Using the public data produced by the U.S Department of Education College Scorecard, below are the top 10 HBCUs with the highest median earnings for undergraduate students 10 years after entering school.

1. Bowie State University – Bowie, MD – $47,000

BSU MSI Lineup

Bowie State University, a public 4-year institution located in the suburban city of Bowie, MD, has stellar cyber security programs. The cyber security programs were recognized as a National Center for Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. Bowie State has many great initiatives taking place. It’s first signature program, Education Innovation Initiative, provides work experience for students to develop technology-based solutions to real-world problems of local corporations.


2. Xavier University of Louisiana – New Orleans, LA – $46,500


Xavier University of Louisiana, a private 4-year Roman Catholic school located in the Crescent City, is one of only two pharmacy schools in Louisiana. Xavier’s College of Pharmacy is among the nation’s top four producers of African American Doctor of Pharmacy degree recipients. Xavier is also the No.1 ranked pre-medical program in the nation to produce African-American graduates who go on to complete medical school. Around 43% of Xavier students are either in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences program or the Physical Science program.


3. Howard University – Washington, D.C – $46,500

Howard MSI Lineup

Howard University is a private, four-year university in Washington, D.C. Howard’s most popular academic programs include Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, and the college is the top producer of Peace Corp volunteers.


4. Spelman College – Atlanta, GA – $ 46,400

Spelman MSI

Spelman College, one of two all-women HBCUs, has been recognized among the top 100 national liberal arts colleges and is the no. 1 ranked HBCU for the third straight year, according to the 2016 U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings. Spelman also topped the list as the No. 1 producer among small schools that provide alumni for Teach For America.


5. Hampton University – Hampton, VA – $42,200


Hampton University in Hampton, VA is known for its stellar Psychology and Health Professions Programs. Home of the Pirates, Hampton has graduated notable African-American trailblazers like Booker T. Washington and Douglas Palmer, the first African-American mayor of Trenton, NJ. In 2011, Hampton University was listed in the top 10 rankings in the Research Category for master’s universities in the Washington Monthly College Guide.


6. Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA – $40,900


Morehouse College, the nation’s only all-male institution founded with the purpose of bettering African-American men, strives to develop men with disciplined minds who will lead lives of leadership and service. Morehouse’s 10th president, Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Franklin, created the “Five Wells,” an ideal to cultivate men of Morehouse as “Renaissance men with social conscience and global perspective” who were Well-Read, Well-Spoken, Well-Traveled, Well-Dressed and Well-Balanced. Morehouse has many notable alumni including Martin Luther King, Jr., Maynard Jackson, and Edwin C. Moses.


7. Morgan State University– Baltimore, MD – $39,700


Morgan State University is a 4-year public institution in Baltimore, MD. Morgan State awards more bachelor’s degrees to African-Americans than any other institution in the state. Morgan State accounts for large percentages of engineering and science degrees received by African-Americans in Maryland.


8. University of Maryland Eastern Shore– Princess Anne, MD – $37,800

University of Maryland Eastern Shore MSI Lineup

The University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) is a land-grant HBCU founded in 1886 as the Delaware Conference Academy. UMES’s most popular academic programs include Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services. UMES offers 26 major programs, 13 teaching degree programs, and 8 pre-professional programs.


9. Coppin State University– Baltimore, MD – $37,600 

Coppin State University

Coppin State is a public urban liberal arts university. Coppin’s most popular programs are related to Health and Health Professions. Coppin has also offers the Black Male Initiative Task Force, a core group of students, faculty, and staff who meet regularly to strategize and plan initiatives to improve the retention rates of black male students.


10. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University– $37, 300 


Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), a 4-year public university, is the no. 1 producer of African Americans with baccalaureate degrees. Graduates in FAMU’s pharmacy, public health, and nursing programs previously achieved 100 percent passage rates on their respective professional licensure examinations.

3 thoughts on “Top 10 HBCUs with the Highest Median Earnings

  1. Location seems to be playing a major role here. Bowie & Howard’s proximity to the higher paying DC market bodes well for them, as does most of the others proximity large metropolitan areas.


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