Founded in 1990 and located just a few miles from the state system’s more famous flagship, the University of Washington at Bothell is a little known school that dramatically outperforms its peers on graduation rates and alumni financial success indicators. It isn’t particularly selective. The typical student scored about 500 on each of the SAT tests, and the school admits about 75% percent of those who apply. Almost 40% of its students come from low-income families.
Yet more than two-thirds of freshmen go on to graduate—an impressive 16 percentage points better than other schools with similar student profiles. And graduates appear to thrive, reporting salaries averaging about $52,000 within five years, or $12,000 more than graduates of comparable schools. Students tend to focus on health, business, and computer science majors, but philosophy and psychology are also popular.