Is Babson College Worth It?
Ask someone from the Babson College community and they will likely tell you yes, Babson College is worth it. But, beyond a very subjective answer from a community that has a lot of passionate alumni pride, it helps to break down the numbers to understand why, from a purely data perspective, it is worth it.
Babson financial aid
Babson meets 100% of incoming students’ demonstrated financial need in the first year and commits to each student’s level of Babson Grant for all four years, provided there is no change in the number of children attending college in the family and no major change to the family’s financial circumstances.
This makes it a lot easier for families to get a sense of how much the college investment will be if their child attends Babson.
You can also use the net price calculator to better understand your cost.
Beyond the cost of education and the financial aid available, you want to pay attention to outcomes. Outcomes to look for in order to weigh your investment include:
- Percentage of students employed or attending graduate school within 6 months of graduation
- Average starting salary of graduates
- Specific areas of study as they relate to salary
- Average earnings over lifetime
- Mid-career earnings
At Babson, 99% of students are employed or continuing their education within six months of graduation. Of that 99%, 13% are pursuing additional education and 6% are starting their own venture.
The average starting salary was $62,399 for the undergraduate class of 2020. Babson has been ranked the number 1 private business school for salary potential by PayScale for the past five years. Of course, you can dig deeper into average starting salary numbers, too. Some schools, like Babson, include a breakdown of starting salaries by industry.
This success is because Babson’s curriculum and co-curricular activities closely align with the eight career competencies that the National Association of Colleges and Employers cites as being critical to career readiness, says Jaime Doherty, Interim Director and Senior Associate Director, Corporate Relations and Recruitment at Babson. “The top two—teamwork and problem solving—are areas in which Babson students stand out.”
Doherty cites Babson’s experiential learning opportunities, such as Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship (where every first-year student launches a business) and the Management Consulting Field Experience (where students work with real organizations on consulting projects), as prime examples that prepare students to thrive in the workplace.
“You are doing project-based work on a regular basis,” she says, also noting that students gain global competencies from the diverse international environment. “When the time comes to answer an interview question like ‘Tell me an example of a conflict you’ve had in a team environment and how you solved it,’ you have 20 examples.”
“The opportunities that students receive from employers is based upon experiences they have while students at Babson,” Doherty explains. “Students are in front of companies, often not for recruiting events, but presenting to alumni, presenting to companies, working directly with organizations on a business challenge. This direct exposure, consistent feedback, and sharing of ideas means students are having real conversation with potential employers while gaining real world experiences.”
The majority of Babson students also complete at least one internship during their four years. In 2020, 91% of students completed an internship while in 2019 it was 90%. “Coming in with the competencies that employers demand means Babson students can contribute from day one,” stresses Doherty.
“Not only are you getting a job you love, you’re on your way to paying back any loans,” says Minden.
She also points out the default rate on loans. While on average, 15% of student loans are in default at any given time and 11% of new graduates default in the first 12 months of repayment, Babson students have a less than 1% default rate.
Depth and breadth of opportunities
Babson students aren’t just getting jobs at a handful of companies, either. While some campuses work with a few major companies, says Doherty, Babson students land at any number of organizations (including major firms like Bank of America Merrill Lynch, PwC and EY). In 2020, there were 317 companies hiring Babson students, plus students went on to 26 graduate schools.
“Some schools focus on the top 20 employers,” observes Doherty. “Babson has those, and they’re strong partners, but our students are as diverse as the companies that hire them. They cover every industry, every function. You decide what you want to do and we help students define that.”
Seeing what industries graduates enter can help you determine if a school is right for your career goals. Babson students enter a range of industries in the public and private sectors, including technology, financial services, retail and fashion, food and beverage, healthcare, marketing, real estate, legal services, and more.
You should also look into a school’s career center. “Babson’s Center for Career Development works closely with faculty,” says Doherty, noting if a professor is interested in having a company talk to a class about a particular topic, career advisors work with them to find the right match. “What ends up happening is students see what’s happening in a real company based on what they’re learning. Then, they may recognize that company at a career fair and already have familiarity.”
These organic interactions between companies and students are a product of Babson’s size, says Doherty, where it’s possible to have close relationships with faculty and students.
The Center for Career Development (CCD) offers other opportunities to help Babson students hone their skills and engage with companies through resume review nights, collaborations with Babson alumni from around the world, company visits, externships (job shadowing for up to three days), and more.
Doherty encourages students to engage with CCD so they can explore opportunities that are the right fit not just based on job description, but company culture. “It may be that a large organization isn’t the best fit for you, you want to feel your voice is heard in a more boutique consulting firm. Or maybe they want to go work for a friend’s startup.”
CCD has partnered with the Office of Undergraduate Admission to offer summer sessions on topics like transitioning your high school resume to a college resume, personal branding, and prepping for future internships. “There’s a lot for students to dig into when arriving on campus. The most important is to get acclimated,” emphasizes Doherty. “Find out where the laundry is, meet friends, figure out your class schedule.”
But she says first-year students are encouraged to join the fall career fair and even meet with the Center's student Peer Career Ambassadors. “Participate in programs when it makes sense for you.”
She stresses that Babson students are able to continue working with CCD even immediately after graduation, and also have plenty of opportunities with alumni services for the rest of their lives.
Minden agrees. “Is your college experience going to end when you walk across the stage? Babson students aren’t Babson students for four years. They’re Babson students for life.”