What Does it Cost to Attend Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University?

 

 

Ranked in the top 100 (76th) of national universities and as the 257th best global university by U.S. News and World Report, it’s no wonder why students are anxious to become Hokies and attend Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, better known as Virginia Tech. Like most well-respected and sought-after schools, earning a degree at Virginia Tech requires an enormous outpouring of time and effort from a student. In most cases, it also demands a considerable amount of money.

 

Simply put, college is an investment. According to CollegeBoard, pursuing a degree at an in-state four-year public college costs $9,410 on average; for out-of-state students, the price more than doubles to $23,890. The expense is even greater at private four-year colleges, which cost an average of $32,410 a year. After devoting considerable monetary funds and human capital to an institution, it’s worth asking what a student can expect in return.

 

To better understand a college’s return on investment (ROI), it’s important to know the cost of college, along with what a student can expect to earn and the debt they will carry after graduation. If you’re interested in attending Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, keep reading to learn how to calculate the real cost of attendance, project outcomes, and pick up a few tips for reducing the expense of higher education and consequently improving ROI.  

 

Why College Costs Are Highly Variable

 

Calculating what college will actually cost out of pocket is not as easy as simply looking up the listed price of an institution. List price is misleading because most students do not end up paying full price for college.

 

Net cost is a better metric for determining what college will actually cost a student. Net cost calculates the amount of aid given to a student from federal, state, and local governments, in addition to aid awarded from the institution and merit aid received by the student—deducting it from the school’s list price to produce a number that accurately represents what a student can anticipate paying.

 

What is the List Price at Virginia Tech?

 

The list price (sometimes called the “cost of attendance”) at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 2016-2107 was $25,762 for in-state students and $42,885 for out-of-state students.

 

As noted earlier, most students do not pay full price at Virginia Tech. Those students who do end up paying list price typically fall outside of the top 30% of accepted students academically and come from high-earning families with incomes exceeding $175,000 a year.

 

What is the Virginia Tech Financial Aid Net Price?

 

One of the primary reasons why students pay less than the list price for college is that they receive financial aid. The financial aid net price—the list price of an institution minus any need-based financial aid received—at Virginia Tech for in-state students is $22,365 and $39,488 for out-of-state students.

 

What is the Family Income-Based Cost of Attending Virginia Tech?

 

The price a student pays to attend Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University depends in large part on the income level of their family. Below is the average cost of attendance per student by income bracket:

 

Family Income Average Net Price
Below $30,000 $11,998
$30,001-$48,000 $14,022
$48,001-$75,000 $17,684
$75,001-$110,000 $22,517
$110,000+ $23,948

 

How Much Merit Aid Do Virginia Tech Students Receive?

 

Rather than being based on a student’s financial need, merit aid is awarded for a student’s accomplishments. Commonly given for academic achievement, athletic prowess, and artistic talent, merit aid can help lower the cost of college. In a CollegeVine survey of more than 1,000 colleges and universities, Virginia Tech ranked 801st in merit aid generosity.

 

17.9% of undergraduates without financial need at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University receive merit aid, with the average award being $675. This makes the average net price of Virginia Tech for in-state students who don’t qualify for financial aid $25,087 and $42,210 for out-of-state students.

 

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How Many Virginia Tech Students Take Out Loans?

 

Loans play a role in many students’ financial strategy for how to pay for college, and undergrads at Virginia Tech are no exception. 67% of Virginia Tech students take out loans, on average borrowing $4,067 via federal student loans.

 

Student Outcomes at Virginia Tech  

 

Student outcomes are an excellent way for students to evaluate an institution’s return on investment. 81% of Virginia Tech students graduate within six years of matriculating—a considerably higher rate than the 59% national average at public, four-year colleges and universities.

 

Ten years after obtaining their degree, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University alumni earn an average salary of $62,500. That’s over $20,000 more than the $43,856 average salary earned in nearby Roanoke, Virginia.

 

Local Area Cost Considerations

 

Blacksburg, Virginia, is a slightly more expensive place to live than other U.S. towns and cities. The cost of living index of Blacksburg is 109, meaning it’s 9% more expensive than the national average.

 

All freshmen at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University are required to live on campus. The University believes the convenience of on-campus housing, resident advisor support, and other on-campus amenities are a good reason to remain on campus after freshman year, along with the assertion that living on campus is more economical—room and board at Virginia Tech in 2018-2019 cost $9,200 for both in- and out-of-state students. For students electing to live off campus, below is the average rent of an apartment in Blacksburg:

 

  • Studio: $750
  • One bedroom: $820
  • Two bedrooms: $940
  • Three bedrooms: $1,360

 

For students who hope to work while attending Virginia Tech, the state of Virginia’s minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. This makes Virginia one of 21 states with minimum wages that are not higher than the federally mandated amount.

 

Other Ways to Save Money on College

 

Scholarships are an excellent way for Virginia Tech students to reduce the expense of their education. The university houses all its scholarships on a webpage it calls Scholarship Central. On Scholarship Central, students will find awards ranging from the A.H. & L.B. Teske Scholarship, given to a student enrolled as a Horticulture major, to the Thomas L Robertson Scholarship, which is awarded to students from Virginia intending to pursue a degree in human medicine or biotechnology.

 

In addition to institutional awards, private scholarships provide further opportunity to lower college costs. One good option for college-bound students to consider is the National Merit Scholarship program, which is given to top scorers on the PSAT. Approximately 7,500 students receive awards through this program every year! Find out more about this prestigious program in our blog How to Qualify for the National Merit Scholarship Program.

 

If college is an investment, it should treated as one. Our College Application Program can help students better understand the economic impact of their decisions—including what college will really cost and the anticipated ROI of different schools and majors. Our Application Program can even help students improve ROI by helping them negotiate aid offers along with assisting them in finding and applying for private scholarships. Contact us today to learn more!

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Timothy Peck
Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
A graduate of Northeastern University with a degree in English, Tim Peck currently lives in Concord, New Hampshire, where he balances a freelance writing career with the needs of his two Australian Shepherds to play outside.