Top 100 Affordable Health and Wellness Schools

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Are you considering earning a degree in health and wellness? This is a good choice for people who want to make a lasting difference in others’ lives but are less interested in providing care in typical settings. Health and wellness professionals tend to focus on prevention and frequently take a more active role in their communities. If you are excited by the prospect of educating and inspiring people to live healthier lives, it may be time to find an accredited health and wellness degree program.

This career field is best suited for individuals interested in providing health care, but not necessarily wanting to take part in a clinical role. These professional frequently work with other providers, businesses, and community members to promote healthy habits.

Degrees of this type can lead to extremely impactful career opportunities. Students learn how to be advocates for healthy living, as well as how to utilize various medical strategies and knowledge. Health and wellness programs tend to provide broad coverage of the industry, but the ultimate goal is always improving the lives of others. They often combine traditional healthcare strategies with social studies to promote wellbeing and prevent disease. As a result, students typically study both physical and behavioral health.

Those enrolled in these programs should expect to focus skills development in areas of public health insights, wellness advocacy, holistic healthcare, leadership, and management. Graduates often find jobs in a wide variety of related fields. Employment opportunities are often available at hospitals, clinics, community care facilities, and government agencies.

As with most healthcare professions, some level of higher education is required in order to qualify for employment. Earning a degree of any kind can be expensive, so it is important to keep affordability in mind as you establish your academic and career goals.

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Top 100 Affordable Health and Wellness College Rankings

Reviewing school rankings for affordable health and wellness programs can be extremely helpful. Rankings can help you find the perfect solution to meet your unique needs so you can achieve your academic and career goals.

To narrow your search, we focus our data collection on colleges and universities that specialize in affordable health and wellness programs. We identify and organize the most relevant data points into a simple, easy-to-understand, and useful format by focusing our attention on the most pertinent information.

While we consider a range of data types when generating rankings, some of the most prominent areas of interest include cost of tuition, graduation rate, and diplomas awarded.

Tuition cost is an important variable that warrants serious consideration. Identifying which colleges and universities are within your price-range is essential to finding an affordable academic solution. This information can also help you assess the overall value of the education offered by a particular institution.

Graduation rates refer to the percentage of students who graduate from a college or university within the expected timeframe. Most institutions offering bachelor’s degrees anticipate students will graduate within four years, but it can be more than this. This information can help you select a program and plan for school more accurately.

The number of diplomas awarded indicates how many students have graduated with degrees. This information can show you how many fellow students are still working towards graduation.


CUNY Lehman College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,410
    • Out-of-state: $15,360
  • Net Price: $3,913
  • Retention Rate: 83%
  • Total Enrollment: 15,143
  • Undergrad Students: 13,002
  • Graduate Students: 2,141
  • Graduation Rate: 53%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • CUNY Lehman College

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $8,917
    • Out-of-state: $18,733
  • Net Price: $4,419
  • Retention Rate: 76%
  • Total Enrollment: 29,113
  • Undergrad Students: 24,965
  • Graduate Students: 4,148
  • Graduation Rate: 47%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 24
  • The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

CUNY Brooklyn College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,440
    • Out-of-state: $15,390
  • Net Price: $4,736
  • Retention Rate: 80%
  • Total Enrollment: 17,811
  • Undergrad Students: 14,970
  • Graduate Students: 2,841
  • Graduation Rate: 54%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • CUNY Brooklyn College

CUNY York College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,358
    • Out-of-state: $15,308
  • Net Price: $5,228
  • Retention Rate: 62%
  • Total Enrollment: 8,337
  • Undergrad Students: 8,116
  • Graduate Students: 221
  • Graduation Rate: 32%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 163
  • CUNY York College

Indiana University-Northwest

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,715
    • Out-of-state: $20,574
  • Net Price: $5,453
  • Retention Rate: 64%
  • Total Enrollment: 3,877
  • Undergrad Students: 3,454
  • Graduate Students: 423
  • Graduation Rate: 32%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 26
  • Indiana University-Northwest

Dalton State College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,683
    • Out-of-state: $10,589
  • Net Price: $5,776
  • Retention Rate: 63%
  • Total Enrollment: 4,964
  • Undergrad Students: 4,964
  • Graduate Students: 0
  • Graduation Rate: 29%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 3
  • Dalton State College

Georgia Highlands College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,344
    • Out-of-state: $9,696
  • Net Price: $6,624
  • Retention Rate: 80%
  • Total Enrollment: 6,168
  • Undergrad Students: 6,168
  • Graduate Students: 0
  • Graduation Rate: 13%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • Georgia Highlands College

California State University-Stanislaus

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,584
    • Out-of-state: $19,464
  • Net Price: $7,418
  • Retention Rate: 83%
  • Total Enrollment: 10,974
  • Undergrad Students: 9,723
  • Graduate Students: 1,251
  • Graduation Rate: 57%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 30
  • California State University-Stanislaus

Midland College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $4,350
    • Out-of-state: $5,610
  • Net Price: $7,420
  • Retention Rate: N/A
  • Total Enrollment: 5,115
  • Undergrad Students: 5,115
  • Graduate Students: 0
  • Graduation Rate: 23%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • Midland College

Franklin University

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $9,577
    • Out-of-state: $9,577
  • Net Price: $7,658
  • Retention Rate: 47%
  • Total Enrollment: 6,031
  • Undergrad Students: 4,261
  • Graduate Students: 1,770
  • Graduation Rate: 42%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • Franklin University
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Why a Degree from an Affordable Health and Wellness School?

Many students choose to pursue health and wellness degrees because they are passionate about helping others. Overall, this career path is dynamic and rewarding, offering numerous opportunities to improve the health and quality life of individuals, communities, and special populations.

Some of the key roles filled by health and wellness professionals include:

  • Community Health Workers
  • Health Coaches
  • Life Coaches
  • Health Educators
  • Health Education Specialists
  • Health Program Coordinators
  • Corporate Wellness Directors

Other benefits include strong career outlook, decent financial compensation, and easily transferrable skills that create competitive candidates in the job market.

While earning a health and wellness degree can be extremely beneficial, it can be costly. Everyone comes from different circumstances, but many prospective students lack the financial stability necessary to pay for school outright. Paying to attend a college or university is no small commitment, especially if multiple degrees are necessary. This makes finding an affordable academic program a top priority.

Applying for financial aid is a viable option for most students. Scholarships and grants, in particular, can make enrolling in a health and wellness program fiscally possible, as the funds do not need to be paid back in the future. It’s rare, however, for these types of assistance to account for all of the costs associated with attending college. As a result, many students also take out loans, which must be paid back over time. Unfortunately, depending too heavily on loans while in school can result in financial hardships later.

While financial aid should be used to supplement expenses, the best solution is finding an affordable health and wellness program. Affordability is particularly important for students who demonstrate significant financial need. Regardless of your academic goals, opting for a less expensive program is often optimal.

Choosing an Affordable Health and Wellness College

There are several factors you should consider when looking for an affordable health and wellness program. Every college and university is unique; comparing and contrasting important features can make it easier to determine which institution suits your needs best. Some of the most significant differences warranting consideration include cost, location, accreditation, instructional methods, and graduation requirements.

  • Cost
    The cost of earning a health and wellness degree can vary significantly. There are several key factors that often impact college and university tuitions including institution type, location, and available financial aid options. Becoming familiar with these elements now can make it easier to find an affordable program. Public schools, for example, tend to cost less money to attend than private ones. It’s also advisable to keep possible living accommodations in mind, as living on campus is often more expensive.

  • Location
    Where you earn your health and wellness degree is important. While there are colleges and universities all over the United States, choosing one that is far away may not be the best idea. Many public institutions charge out-of-state students significantly more for tuition than they do local residents. This is why it’s often a good idea to attend a school near where you intend to work in the future. This is because local schools tend to know what employers in the area look for most in candidates.

  • Accreditation
    You should always verify the accreditation status of a colleges and universities prior to enrolling in a health and wellness program. While it is not required, most academic institutions choose to become regionally or internationally accredited. Accreditation by accepted accrediting agencies ensures the school meets various education standards. In the United States, accrediting agencies are overseen by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

    Regional agencies approved by CHEA and the U.S. Board of Education include:

    • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
    • New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC)
    • North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCACS)
    • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
    • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS COC)
    • Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Schools (WASC ACS)
  • Graduation Requirements
    Graduation requirements tend to be relatively similar between institutions, but minor differences do exist. As a result, you might want to review health and wellness program expectations carefully before submitting an application. Fortunately, most colleges and universities provide a complete breakdown of curriculums, course descriptions, and available concentrations on their official websites.

  • Instruction Methods
    Discovering a school’s instructional methods can be a little more difficult. It’s important, however, to ensure your unique learning needs and preferences can be met before enrolling in a health and wellness program. Some factors to consider are class size, assignment types, and available academic resources. If this information is not provided online, contact the department directly for assistance. Similarly, if a traditional classroom setting does not suit your situation, online options are available.

Online Options

While many medical degrees are not well-suited to distance learning, there are plenty of online health and wellness program options available. This option provides new and returning students the opportunity to complete coursework from anywhere in the world. There are numerous colleges and universities that offer remote degrees for those disinterested or unable to attend classes in person. They are flexible enough for current professionals and people with personal obligations that make on-campus learning difficult. Online health and wellness programs are particularly to returning students, individuals with families, and those transitioning from other fields.

In addition to offering a convenient alternative to traditional on-campus learning, many colleges and universities offer accelerated online programs. These are specially designed to take less time to complete. While offerings differ, it is not uncommon to find associate degree programs that can be completed in as few as 18 months. There are also accelerated bachelor’s degrees.

There are, however, a few drawbacks to online learning. Not only must students be exceptionally self-motivated to complete assignments, but they may have limited access to various resources often available in traditional learning settings. As a result, it’s always a good idea to verify which services are available for distance learners. Career development departments often provide the following support to current students and recent graduates.

  • Interview Preparation
  • Resume Development
  • Career Coaching Services
  • Internship Opportunities
  • Job Fairs

Because health and wellness positions are rarely clinical in nature, enrolling in an online program is a completely viable means of earning a degree. As long as the school is properly accredited, graduates can still expect to find employment.

Are Health and Wellness Programs in High Demand?

Many colleges and universities offer credible health and wellness degree programs. Whether you want to study on campus or online, you should have little trouble finding an option that meets your needs.

Overall, the outlook for health and wellness professionals working in the United States is quite promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in healthcare occupations is projected to grow by 15% from 2019 to 2029. Health education specialists and community health workers can expect to see a 13% increase during the same period. This is much faster than the national average for all other professions. An increase of this size is expected to add about 2.4 million new healthcare jobs to the market, including approximately 14,500 new openings for health education specialists and community health workers.

The primary explanation for the anticipated job growth is the country’s steadily aging population. As current generations become older, there will be a greater demand for healthcare services nationwide. Additionally, efforts to improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs by teaching good behaviors will contribute to job growth in this field.

Professionals who can speak one or more foreign languages will have greater job prospects. As health and wellness positions require significant contact with community members, those with knowledge of various cultures will be highly coveted.

What Can You Do with a Degree in Health and Wellness?

There are a few different career paths available after earning a degree in health and wellness. Becoming familiar with the various employment options now can ensure you receive the knowledge and training necessary to be successful in the future.

  • Community Health Workers
    Community health workers focus on connecting people and communities with the resources and support they need to access appropriate healthcare.
  • Health Educators
    Health educators focus on teaching individuals and communities various behaviors and techniques for preventing disease, injury, and other health problems.
  • Health Program Coordinators
    Health program coordinators focus on the administrative tasks related to overseeing a non-profit, public health agency, medical facility, or profit organization dedicated the healthcare.
  • Corporate Wellness Directors
    Corporate wellness directors focus on promoting a healthy work culture, encouraging the health of employees, and managing rising healthcare benefit costs for their respective companies or organizations.

Notably, community health workers rarely require more than a high school diploma to find employment. Some employers give preference to or require candidates to have an associate degree in health and wellness. These programs typically cover common wellness topics, as well as ethics and cultural awareness. On the job training is often necessary.

The most obvious career pathway after earning a bachelor’s degree in health and wellness is to become a health education specialist. Four-year programs are generally designed to provide students with an introduction to the theories and methods of health behavior and health education. Additional knowledge is often gained through internships.

A master’s in health and wellness will provide the knowledge and skills necessary attain management positions in the field.

Health and wellness graduates often work for the government, individual and family service facilities, religious organizations, hospitals, and outpatient care centers. In 2019, the largest employer for community health workers and health education specialists was the government.

Health and Wellness Graduates Earn More After College

The earning potential for professionals working in health and wellness ranges from below average to well above average, depending on the type of position held. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for community health workers was $42,000 in 2020, which is only slightly higher than the median annual wage of $42,000 as reported for all occupations. However, the lowest 10% of workers in this profession earned less than $28,100. Health education specialists, on the other hand, had a median annual wage of $56,500, with the lowest 10% earning around $33,700.

According to PayScale, the average hourly wage for community health workers is $16.81. After 20 or more years of working in this position, the average hourly compensation becomes $18.38. The average base salary for health educators is around $46,300. After 20 or more years of working in this position, the average yearly wage comes closer to $59,000.

Education level often impacts salary potential. According to PayScale, individuals who possess a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in health and wellness make an average salary of $48,600. Those who lack an advanced degree often make significantly less money. Conversely, those with a master’s degree will qualify for higher-level jobs and are likely to earn larger salaries.

Salary is also often dependent upon location. Some states pay community health workers and health education specialists more than others. Pay for professionals in this field is best in New Mexico, Alaska, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, California, and the District of Columbia. Conversely, the states of Texas, South Dakota, Mississippi, Ohio, and West Virginia have some of the lowest salaries in the industry.


  • What are the admission requirements for health and wellness students?
    Every college and university is different, but some admission requirements are considered universal. Incoming freshman should, however, always review application materials carefully before submitting them to ensure all items are completed correctly.

    In most cases, expect to provide the following:

    • Official High School Transcripts or College Transcripts
    • Minimum Grade Point Average (GPA)
    • Application and Fees
    • Letters of Recommendation
    • Personal Statement or Supplemental Essay
    • Academic Work Samples
    • Scores from College Entrance Exams (SAT, ACT, GRE, GMAT etc.)
  • How long will it take to complete a health and wellness degree?
    The length of time needed to complete a health and wellness degree will depend on the type of degree you are seeking. Some accelerated programs offered online can be completed in a matter months.

    In general, an associate degree consists of about 60 credit hours and will take full-time students two years to complete. Bachelor’s degree programs are made up of 120 credit hours that require approximately four years to complete. Master’s degrees usually consist of 30 credit hours and take full-time students two years to complete.

    Prior work experience that can be converted into course hours is sometimes accepted and can decrease the time it takes to graduate. Credit hours from advanced placement classes or previous degrees can also be applied.

  • How much does a health and wellness program cost?
    The cost of enrolling in a health and wellness degree program will vary significantly depending on the following important factors:

    • Degree Type
    • Institution Type
    • Housing
    • Commute
    • Technology Fees
    • Books and Supplies
    • Location

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