BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Three Maryland universities are named some of the “best value” schools in America.

Monique Griego has more on how even big name schools made the list, thanks to financial aid.

Finding a good college at a good price isn’t always easy.

“Stressful, definitely. Yeah,” said Grant Lease.

Lease had his sights set on Johns Hopkins University and, with a little help, he made it.

“My mom doesn’t make a lot of money per year but I got a lot of aid to come here,” Lease said.

The ability to offer an excellent education at an affordable price is what landed Johns Hopkins, Saint Mary’s College of Maryland and the University of Maryland College Park on the Princeton Review’s 100 “Best Value” Colleges for 2012.

The review picked schools based on academics, what it costs to go there and how much aid students can receive.

“That’s our commitment, to make sure that a student who is qualified to come to Johns Hopkins and we want at Johns Hopkins has the ability to come, no matter what his or her finances are,” said Dennis O’Shea.

But staying a best value school isn’t easy. Leaders at Johns Hopkins say they’re constantly working to keep things affordable.

“We are very aggressive about working with our supporters to raise dollars for financial aid,” said O’Shea.

At Hopkins on average, financial aid covers 60 percent of the cost of attendance and nearly 50 percent of students currently receive it.

“Most people think this school is rich, as far as the students, and that’s very far from the truth,” said Mychaela Worrell.

Many schools on the list had high sticker prices, but it all came down to offering students options.

“I feel that if they really want a student, they have the resources available,” said Worrell.

The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill ranked number one on the list of best value schools. The review compiled data from around 650 undergraduate colleges.

The review has complete information on the top 75 public and 75 private schools.


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