Trends & Insights

As the higher education landscape changes, Optimal seeks to provide data-driven studies on important topics across our sites. Our studies use proprietary research and in-depth analysis.

Best schools for graduating with no debt</br> (that you can actually get into)

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 11/15/2022

These 15 schools result in the lowest debt for students and have at least a 50% acceptance rate

Gen Z and Millennials Are Twice As Likely As Gen X and Baby Boomers to Pick College Based on Prestige

By Shadi Bushra | Updated 9/23/2022

Our survey shows younger generations are twice as likely to choose a college based on prestige than older generations.

Looking to relocate? Here are top 7 states to move to for work

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 9/28/2022

We compared job openings, the number of job seekers, and advertised salaries by state to find the best options for relocating. 

Hispanic-Serving Institutions with the Highest Payoff

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 9/15/2022

Earnings data shows religious schools and universities in Florida and California top the list of HSIs with the highest payoff.

Pandemic Worsened Perennial Teacher Shortages, But No Nationwide Exodus From Education Yet

By Shadi Bushra | Updated 8/1/2022

The exodus of teachers that many thought the pandemic would trigger has yet to happen.

Majors where HBCU grads earn higher than average starting salaries

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 8/11/2022

Data shows that HBCU grads can earn more than average for their field of study in these seven majors.

Pandemic pushes Amazon to #1 largest employer for recent college graduates

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 7/12/2022

Amazon became the largest employer for recent bachelor's grads. Here's a look at the top degrees and most popular jobs for grads at Amazon.

Attention, Class of 2022: These are the top 25 employers for recent grads

By Taylor Nichols | Updated 6/27/2022

We took a look at where 550,000+ recent college graduates worked one year after earning their degree to find out which companies offer the best chances at a job out of college.

25 Best Jesuit Colleges and Universities by Salary Outcomes

By Shadi Bushra | Updated 6/13/2022

Analysis of Jesuit colleges found that their average salary outcomes are stronger than national median salaries


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