An Augustana education: Recognized for affordability

This piece is presented by Augustana University.

Augustana University leads South Dakota in offering the most “top-notch education at the most reasonable prices,” according to the 2018 Best University Rankings.

That’s the latest in a series of recognitions and accomplishments solidifying AU’s outstanding regional reputation with prospective employers, civic and business leaders.

The university continues to be honored for academic achievement, value and affordability. In the past year, Forbes again ranked Augustana among the nation’s best colleges and universities, based on student satisfaction, post-graduate success, student debt, graduation rates and nationally competitive awards. Augustana was ranked No. 3 among the Best Regional Colleges in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.

But here’s a statistic that might surprise you: 100 percent of students attending Augustana University receive some type of financial assistance.

The average overall financial aid award for a student in the class of 2021 was $26,277.

“It’s important for students and their families to know of Augustana’s commitment to making our first-class education possible. The national recognition AU has received affirms the high level at which we invest in bright, talented and motivated students. We are also determined to support students who demonstrate financial need,” said Nancy Davidson, vice president for enrollment.

“There is no fee for students to apply for admission and scholarships, and we’ve streamlined the admission process to remove any potential barriers. An early and transparent preview of scholarship resources affirms our commitment to a well-informed college search.”

Financial assistance at Augustana comes in many forms, including academic and talent scholarships as well as need-based grants and scholarships. Here’s a quick look at initial scholarships students qualify for based on academic metrics:

Additionally, Augustana students may qualify for the following awards:

  • Many South Dakota students qualify for the South Dakota Opportunity Scholarship. By meeting the requirements of a 3.0 cumulative GPA and 24 ACT composite, they will receive a minimum $13,000 annual academic scholarship from Augustana.
  • Top scholars will receive an $18,000 scholarship, and students who have achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.5 and 27 or higher on the ACT (1210 SAT: CR +M) may earn additional funds through Augustana’s Distinguished Scholars program.

Collectively, Augustana students received more than $33 million last year in scholarships, grants, loans and work study — ranking the university among the top 10 nationwide for the number and size of scholarships awarded to students. The No. 7 ranking appeared in’s list of The 46 Best Colleges for Getting Big Merit Scholarships, recognizing high-value schools where students “have a good chance of landing significant scholarship aid.” In the U.S. News report, the university also received high rankings in the analysis of schools that offer students the best value.

“Among what sets Augustana apart is the successful outcomes achieved by our students and graduates affirm the value of investing in an AU education. Our alumni experience significant lifetime returns,” Davidson said. “The ability to earn a degree in four years adds to the value and creates a strengthened financial position for the future.”

Job placement is another success story. The placement rate for recent grads is 98 percent, with a mean starting salary of $43,471.

“The other key for our graduates’ financial success is a manageable debt load,” Davidson said. “We are grateful to our many generous donors who provide scholarship resources that help limit the amount borrowed.”

Loan amounts for Augustana graduates are comparable to those of students attending public universities.

Calculate your investment, after scholarships and grants, with this net price calculator for prospective students. And learn more here about financing an Augustana education.

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An Augustana education: Recognized for affordability

Augustana University leads South Dakota in offering the most “top-notch education at the most reasonable prices,” according to the 2018 Best University Rankings.

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