100 Richest Universities: Their Generosity and Commitment to Research

The 100 Richest Universities: Their Generosity and Commitment to Research
The Best Schools
JAMES A. BARHAM, SEP 13, 2019

The Top 10 Richest Universities in North America

Harvard University
The University of Texas System
Yale University
Stanford University
Princeton University
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
University of Pennsylvania
Texas A&M University System
University of Michigan
Northwestern University
When you look for a university to attend, you probably consider factors like location, reputation, faculty, and degree programs. But do you consider a school’s wealth?

The wealthier the university, the better its facilities are likely to be. Better facilities mean more up–to–date technology and research opportunities. Richer schools tend to attract a world–class faculty and usually have more scholarship money to distribute. Sometimes, these colleges and universities even entirely waive tuition costs for students in financial need.

While a university’s wealth typically comes from monetary donations, people and charitable foundations also donate things like land, buildings, artwork, rare books, valuable documents, and other things of high monetary value.

The following schools are the 100 richest schools in North America. Many of them are also on our ranking of the 100 Best Universities in the World, as well as our ranking of the 50 Best Online Colleges & Universities 2019, which demonstrates a connection between endowment and school quality. We have ranked them by financial endowment (sourced from the 2019 NACUBO–Commonfund Study of Endowments), meaning the trust available to each university through cash and other assets. We have also included important information, such as the average undergraduate cost of tuition before any reductions (from the National Center of Education Statistics), average salary for full professors (from the Chronicle of Higher Education), and Annual Research Expenditures (from the National Science Foundation annual report).

Note: This ranking is more time–sensitive than most TBS rankings is updated regularly since endowments can change quickly because of major cash donations as well as investment volatility. This ranking was last updated September 2019.