College and the Economy
Dear BSC Parents and Future BSC Parents:
There is something at Birmingham-Southern that we call 'Southern Care. It has been a part of the college's educational experience throughout its history. The care that the faculty, staff, and alumni of this college have shown for its students over many generations is extraordinary and powerful. It is what sets this community apart from other college campuses in America.
Our 'Southern Care manifests itself in many ways. One of these is our commitment to always provide the highest quality liberal arts education at an affordable cost. There always has been a partnership between Birmingham-Southern and its students and their parents to remain affordable, and it will always remain that way. During these times of economic uncertainty and ever-increasing tuition across the nation, our commitment has never been stronger.
Most all colleges will say they care, but caring is measured more by actions than by words. Here is what that means at Birmingham-Southern:
Birmingham-Southern is a good steward of its resources, which allows us to keep tuition affordable. Annual tuition increases at Birmingham-Southern are below the national average for both public and private institutions, and in many cases as much as three times lower than those at public colleges and universities. We use our resources wisely, focusing on the scholarships, programs, facilities, and technology that continuously enhance the learning and living environments of our students. The college is annually recognized by such publications as Fiske Guide to Colleges, Colleges That Change Lives, and The Princeton Review for offering quality liberal arts education at an affordable price.
Our Financial Aid Office annually awards more than $22 million in aid and scholarships, which amounts to an average of $13,000 for each qualifying student. More than 98 percent of our students receive some type of aid, including scholarships, loans, grants, and work-study. Thus, the average BSC student graduates with far less debt than students from other private colleges, and, even more surprisingly, with less debt than graduates of major public schools. You can see the average financial aid received by entering freshmen for fall 2008 at our financial aid web site.
We have alumni and friends who fund merit and need-based scholarships and other grants for our students because they know firsthand the importance of a BSC education. Some of these grants are designed specifically to “fill the gap” between family income and aid received to ensure that qualified students who want to attend Birmingham-Southern can do so.
A Birmingham-Southern education is a bargain financially compared with the elite liberal arts colleges across the region. But when measuring the value of a college or university, you should consider much more than cost. A Birmingham-Southern education provides more opportunities and opens more doors after graduation than most other institutions of higher learning. Simply put, our graduates are sought-after, whether by the nation's most prestigious graduate schools or by not-for-profit or multinational companies. Each year, more than 50 percent of our graduates go straight to graduate school, which is considerably higher than any public institution. We annually rank No. 1 in Alabama and among the nation's best in graduates accepted to medical, dental, and health career programs, and we also rank high nationally in graduates accepted into law school. Others go straight into the workforce, often taking advantage of the network of alumni across the United States and in nearly 50 foreign countries and the job connections that often result. This is the type of return you should expect from the investment in your child's education. Read comments from some of our alumni here.
You can find additional information about the value of a Birmingham-Southern education—as well as our 'Southern Care program—by visiting www.bsc.edu/value, or, by contacting our Admission and Financial Aid professionals toll-free at 800-523-5793, extension 4696.
This is our partnership with you—our way of providing the care that you and your student expect, but that is increasingly absent from today's society. There are many choices out there for your college education. We hope that when making your final decision that you will consider our commitment to always provide the best possible liberal arts education at an affordable price.