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Surprise Texas college named the most affordable school in the nation

Surprise Texas college named the most affordable school in the nation

Every year, the cost of sending young adults off to college skyrockets, leaving many questioning whether or not the investment is actually worth it.

In a sea of statistics, it can be difficult to evaluate the pros and cons of investing in higher education. Different publications have employed varying methodologies in order to make sense of the jumbled information available to the public but for the first time, the United States government has gotten involved.

The Department of Education recently released its own rankings of the most and least affordable colleges in the United States. The College Affordability and Transparency Center (which was recently launched) was mandated by education reforms passed in 2008, and aims to reveal to the general public the true costs of going to college.

The Center allows users to sort colleges either by tuition costs or net costs, which takes into account the average costs after tuition, room and board, book fees and financial aid.

CNNMoney compiled a list of the 10 most affordable colleges, and many from the Lone Star State made the cut. 

McAllen's South Texas College came in first, with a net price of only $1,317 to attend, and Edinburg's University of Texas - Pan American ran a close second, maintaining a net price of $1,646.

The ninth spot belongs to Laredo's Texas A&M International University, with a net price of $4,594. 

No major Texas universities, including Rice University, the University of Houston, the University of Texas or Texas A&M made either the top five percent or bottom 10 percent of the rankings, which are the only ones reported by the Center. 

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Many in the U.S. are starting to believe that higher education is no longer worth the investment.
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The Affordability and Transparency Center aims to provide accurate information about the costs of attending college. Photo via College Cost
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The surprise school? South Texas College. Photo by Wonderwomen956