But a few col­leges have ben­e­fited from the shift in values. “Col­leges like North­eastern and Drexel are really coming up in the world because they offer co-​​op pro­grams,” where stu­dents spend sev­eral semes­ters in full-​​time jobs related to their studies, usu­ally with pay, Ruben­stone noted.

In the last six years, North­eastern University’s ranking on U.S. News & World Report’s col­lege survey has soared from 98 to 56. And even though Northeastern’s tuition now tops $40,000 a year, appli­ca­tions have increased more than 40 per­cent since 2009, while SAT scores of incoming stu­dents have steadily risen.

Spokes­woman Renata Nyul says Northeastern’s co-​​op pro­gram is a “huge reason” for its pop­u­larity. “Our mis­sion is to pro­vide a real-​​world expe­ri­ence and an edu­ca­tion that’s rooted in the inte­gra­tion of rig­orous class­room learning and real-​​world pro­fes­sional expe­ri­ence,” she said. “That’s been the ethos of this place for a long time, but lately is seems to really resonate.”

Co-​​ops can also pave the way for per­ma­nent employ­ment, Nyul says: “Ninety per­cent of our grad­u­ates are employed full-​​time and 87 per­cent are doing some­thing related to what they majored in.”


Read the article at The Washington Post →