Joliet, Ill. – While the calendar says that 2020 is preparing to wind down, it is already time for current high school seniors and last spring’s high school graduates who took a gap-year due to uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic to begin the process of selecting a higher-education institution to attend in fall 2021. To assist students with making that decision, personal finance website WalletHub (wallethub.com) recently released its 2021 College and University Rankings.

The rankings, which were compiled by comparing more than 1,000 higher-education institutions across 30 different measures within seven categories that included Student Selectivity, Cost & Financing and Career Outcomes, named the University of St. Francis one of the top five overall higher-education institutes in Illinois (#5). WalletHub’s rankings also placed USF in the top 25 overall in the Midwest (#25), and ranked USF #1 in Illinois in the “Campus Safety” category. To view the list in its entirety, visit wallethub.com/edu/e/college-rankings/40750.

WalletHub representative Adam McCann indicated that the website’s rankings are designed to help students identify both good schools and good deals.

“In a fierce global economy, a college degree can help secure employment and keep you ahead of the competition. Though success ultimately rests on students’ own determination and performance, the quality of the schools they choose can certainly have an impact. However, attending higher education requires more than just the grades to get in. You will also need the financial resources to attend. It varies depending on the school’s public or private status and whether it’s in-state. For those prices, students want to know they are getting a good deal,” McCann said.

USF has a long history of assisting students with the financial obligations that a college degree carries with it. Each year, the university provides need-based financial aid to approximately 96% of full-time undergraduate students. In 2019-2020 alone, USF invested over $23 million in institutional funds in scholarships for full-time undergraduate students. Last month, USF also announced that it was freezing all tuition and housing prices at the current level until fall of 2022.

“2020 has been a challenging year unlike any other,” said Eric Wignall, USF Vice President for Admissions. “High school students are feeling isolated and uncertain about the future. Freezing our tuition, room, and board costs provides some stability for planning an educational path for the students and their families.”

Wignall added that investing in the right college degree program at USF could pay dividends over the long run.

“High school students looking at college, parents, and adults looking at graduate school are right to be cautious about investing time and money into an educational program. A college degree can be worth millions of dollars over the course of one’s career. We have designed degree programs that help our graduates launch truly valuable, meaningful careers,”

For more information on USF programs, financial assistance options or to learn more about registration, visit stfrancis.edu/admissions-aid.

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Currently celebrating 100 years of higher education rooted in Franciscan values, the University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 51,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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