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SC Difference

Number of Pell grant recipients

Columbia:  4,678 – $19,739,867
4-Year Campuses:
Aiken – 1,245 – $5,099,959
Beaufort – 589 – $2,259,098
Upstate – 2,320 – $9,357,724

2-Year Campuses:
Lancaster – 680 – $2,606,415
Salkehatchie – 743 – $2,644,887
Sumter – 491 – $1,900,610
Union – 292 – $1,196,740

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Keeping college affordable in spite of diminishing support

Net cost of tuition    
USC Columbia: Resident Undergraduates $4,100
  24% of Resident Undergraduates Pay No Out of Pocket Tuition because they have scholarships or grants.
Gamecock Guarantee    
USC Columbia: 135 Recipients for Fall 2010 Average family income of $15,968
  Largest cohort enrolled in Fall 2010  
  Retention of Fall 2009 Recipients 89%
  Retention of Fall 2008 Recipients 91%

Among flagship universities in the Southeast, USC has one of the highest percentages of students with Pell Grants (federal assistance for lower-income students.)

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Bond Rating

As of July of this year, there are 8 Aaa-rated public universities, and 15 Aa1.  USC is in a pool of 40 with Aa2 ratings.  The Aaa-rated public universities are Michigan, Indiana, Purdue, UNC, Virginia, Texas, Texas A&M, and U. Washington.  In South Carolina, Clemson and USC are Aa2, Citadel is Aa3, then Coastal, Charleston and MUSC are A1.

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Educating the Critical Needs Workforce

Nearly three-fourths of all graduates from USC's School of Medicine who currently practice medicine in the Palmetto State are in primary care or needed specialties—many of them in non-metropolitan and underserved areas.

More than 5,300 licensed pharmacists in South Carolina earned their degrees at Carolina.

Nearly 5,500 K–12 teachers in South Carolina classrooms earned their degrees at Carolina.

USC nursing programs in Columbia, Spartanburg, and Aiken have awarded more than 3,400 baccalaureate and advanced nursing degrees in the past decade.

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Economic Impact

In the past four years, USC faculty have filed 270 invention disclosures, patented 25 inventions, and licensed 58 technologies attracting investment from private companies interested in commercializing USC’s intellectual property.

The University’s Technology Incubator has graduated 27 companies, creating more than 720 jobs.

Facts & Figures at a Glance

Funding per Student

In spite of decreased funding for higher education from state resources and support that has diminished at a rate greater than our neighboring states, USC serves with pride. South Carolina's state funding per full-time student is $5,700, compared with a U.S. average of $6,928. South Carolina falls 18 percent below the national average. Here is a look at how South Carolina and some of our neighboring states support higher education.

According to the State Higher Education Finance report for FY 2009, total educational revenue, meaning state funding plus tuition and fees, was $10,801 per full-time student in South Carolina, compared with the national average of $10,998.  However, state support per student is 20 percent less than the national average, resulting in higher tuition per student. Simply put, states with larger educational appropriations have lower tuition levels.

Unprecedented Cuts

In just over two years, USC has lost 47 percent, or $105 million, in its state appropriations budget for educating students.

Enrollment and access

USC's mission is to provide access to higher education. Across the USC System, headcount has increased 27 percent in 10 years.  For full-time students, the increase is 38.72 percent. USC educates students from every county in the state.

Quality of Life

USC awards nearly 40 percent of all bachelor’s and graduate degrees conferred at public institutions in our state. USC’s goal is to educate even more South Carolinians and increase the number of South Carolinians with a college degree, thus increasing income and quality of life.

The USC Columbia community contributed more than $7 million to the local economy in volunteer time and money last year.

Economic Impact

The USC system has an economic impact of $3.96 billion on the state and supports more than 46,000 jobs, or 2.5 percent of the state's job base.

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