Daemen College in Amherst was recently named to the "Best Value School" ranking. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley says the listing is based on variety and quality of programs, student satisfaction and affordability.
"It means that all of our efforts to keep our tuition and fees and costs in general very, very low are paying off,” said Gary Olson, president, Daemen College.
Olson tells WBFO News they are honored to be a recipient of the University Research and Review Best Value School Award.
With so much attention and concern surrounding the high cost of a college education and student debt, Olson says they continue to work to strive for affordability.
“Right now, we’re in lucky situation of being able to continue to offer that high quality at a price that families can easily afford,” remarked Olson.
The Best Value listing states Daemen's sticker price at around $41,000 for full-time student. It said that might seem high, but the University Research and Review points out that if you dig deeper, you will learn the average net costs for a first year students is under $18,000 due to student grants and scholarships.
WBFO asked Olson if he believes students put a lot of weight into these college rankings.
“I think some do because more and more people are becoming wise consumers when it comes to colleges and they don’t just go to the one that’s down the street anymore,” replied Olson.
Private colleges in the Western New York region have been very concerned about how the State's new free-tuition plan for those eligible will affect future enrollment at their schools. But Olson is remaining optimistic.
“But I do hope that before people make that choice that they look at all of the restrictions that are imposed on students and families that accept that deal and the hardships that could come from that,” Olson stated. “The biggest challenges is the family that does not look into the facts and details. When they look at those restrictions and find out that if they are not careful and they faultier on some of those, that so-called free-tuition turns into a loan, so I would like to think that the wiser families will see that as an unnecessary burden, because if you are graduating from college with a brand degree, as our students will be on Saturday, and you have all your career in front of you and you have some really good options next door in Pennsylvania or you have a really good job offer in California and some of your family lives out there and it would be perfect for you, but you feel you can’t do it because you’ve accepted this free tuition deal.”
Daemen is one of only three colleges in New York State on the "Best Value" list of over 80-colleges named nationwide. Trocaire College in South Buffalo and Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester are also Best Value recipients.