MSU ranked as top ‘Best Value College’ in Mississippi

Mississippi State University ranked as the top “Best Value” College in Mississippi by SmartAsset, a financial technology company.  (Photo by Megan Bean)

Contact: James Carskadon

STARKVILLE, Miss.—A Mississippi State University education has the highest value of any college or university in the state of Mississippi, according to a recent analysis from SmartAsset, a financial technology company.

According to SmartAsset’s third annual Best Value Colleges study, MSU has a College Education Value Index of 41.36, over three points higher than the University of Mississippi, the second Mississippi school in the rankings. MSU graduates also earn higher average starting salaries than their peers from other state colleges and universities, according to the analysis.

To determine which school provided the most value to students, SmartAsset examined cost of tuition, student living costs, student retention rate, average scholarships awarded and average starting salary. The different categories were weighted to determine each institution’s College Education Value Index.

According to the study, MSU graduates receive an average starting salary of $45,200, which is $2,800 higher than the next highest university in the rankings. The average starting salary for all Mississippi higher education graduates is $40,928.

The land-grant university also has been recognized by the Wall Street Journal for providing the top return on investment among Mississippi’s universities and colleges.

To view SmartAsset’s rankings for Mississippi colleges and universities, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at