: Stanford, Calif. Undergraduate enrollment
: 6,988 Total cost
: $56,008 Average need-based aid
: $39,105 Average net cost
: $16,903 Kiplinger's rank
: #8 among private universities
Thanks to world-class academics and an idyllic, historic campus in the Palo Alto area, 34 miles from San Francisco, this outstanding university attracts top students from around the world. Its admission rate (7%) is second only to Harvard for competitiveness. Stanford is one of the relatively few elite institutions to offer merit aid (an average of $5,701), but it saves most of its largesse for students with need, in no-loan financial aid awards that average almost $40,000.
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: See 10 More Best Values in Private Universities 10 Worst College Majors for Your Career 7 Smart Ways to Pay for College The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.