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Which colleges are the best? AR speaks


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Seniors who plan to go to college find the first semester of 12th grade particularly hectic because they must choose a school for what could be the last stage of their education. A handful of colleges seem to meet the needs of a majority of Archbishop Ryan’s seniors. Year after year, Ryan students choose these schools overwhelmingly.

According to Ms.Casey in the Archbishop Ryan guidance office, the top six most popular schools (not in order), among Ryan students are:

  1. Temple
  2. Penn State
  3. West Chester University
  4. Community College of Philadelphia
  5. Holy Family
  6. Bloomsburg University

What seems to be driving the students toward these schools are the schools’ good reputations, their manageable tuition, and their proximity to students’ homes, according to Ms. Casey.

The tuition for a Holy Family undergraduate, full-time per semester (non-nursing), is $14, 381, and part-time tuition is $615 per credit hour, not including fees. Holy Family is one of the closest because it is just seven minutes from Ryan.

On the other hand, Penn State’s tuition rates vary by campus, program, student level, and residency. Visit for an estimate. Penn State is about a three-hour drive from Ryan.

For The Community College of Philadelphia, Philadelphia residents pay $153 per credit hour, and other Pennsylvanians pay $306 per credit hour plus a $10 nonresident capital fee per credit. CCP is approximately a 30-minute drive from Archbishop Ryan.

At West Chester University the tuition is $3,619.00 for a full-time, in-state undergraduate, with 12-18 credits and $302.00 per credit for each credit over 18, while a part time undergraduate (1-11 credits) would pay $302.00 per credit. WCU is much closer than Penn State at about an hour drive from Ryan.

On the more expensive end, Drexel University’s tuition is $48,660, the fees cost $2,405, and room and board is $14, 367. According to, “These numbers reflect the estimated cost of attendance prior to financial aid being applied. In the 2015–2016 academic year, Drexel offered financial support to 98% of its incoming students; the average scholarship and grant aid offered was $28,854, which includes federal, state and institutional aid.” The same distance as Community College, Drexel University is a 30-minute drive from Archbishop Ryan.

Senior Emily Crane visited Temple recently and contends that there are more pros than cons to the university.

“A con would be where it is located, the area surrounding the school can be really bad, but there are more pros for me at least,”stated Emily. “I loved the campus up there. It’s really big and there’s a lot to do. All of their buildings aren’t that far apart from each other.”

Emily plans to major in nursing. She explained: “Temple has one of the best nursing programs, so I’m leaning toward attending Temple but not completely sure yet.”

Many seniors contemplate going to community college for two years and transferring to a four-year college to earn their degree at a cheaper cost. Another option would be to go to community college for two years or a four-year university to earn a degree.

Unlike Emily, senior Ashley Burgoon is going to Bucks County Community College majoring in photography. BCCC is not on the top six list, but, she explained, “It is close to home, inexpensive and I like the fact that I do not have to take the SATs because the school has its own test that you take to get in.”

Seniors have tough decisions to make this semester, and hard work to put in, especially with SATs coming in October and November. For help on anything college related, visit Ms.Abernathy, or Ms.Casey in the guidance office.

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Which colleges are the best? AR speaks