6 Most Popular Colleges in South Carolina

This state's beaches aren't its only great asset — its universities provide a top notch education.

In 2012, the University of South Carolina Honors College was ranked first among public universities.

By Adam Jazairi

South Carolina is a state as rich with history as it is with beauty. The Palmetto State is home to such gorgeous geographical landmarks as Myrtle Beach, Table Rock State Park, and The Sandhills.

As if these natural wonders aren’t reason enough to live in South Carolina, the state also features a range of higher educational opportunities. Wondering where to start? Try this list of the most popular colleges and universities in South Carolina, complete with information on academics and tuition.

6. Midlands Technical College

Type: Community College

Enrollment: 10,706

Tuition: $4,036 (in-state); $9,532 (out-of-state)

Best Programs: Midlands Technical College offers engineering programs in several areas of specialization, as well as a transfer associate’s designed for engineering majors.

Fun Fact: While most of its academics are taught on-site, Midlands Technical College also provides distance learning opportunities.

5. College of Charleston

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 11,316

Tuition: $7,778 (in-state); $18,732 (out-of-state)

Best Program: College of Charleston takes pride in its unique majors, including the one-of-a-kind Discovery Informatics program.

Fun Fact: Founded nearly 350 years ago, the College of Charleston has the distinction of being South Carolina’s first college.

4. Trident Technical College

Type: Community College

Enrollment: 12,076

Tuition: $3,574 (in-state); $6,100 (out-of-state)

Best Programs: Trident Technical College's academic strength lies in vocational programs in fields like engineering, industrial technology and agriculture.

Fun Fact: As a community college, TTC features an open admissions policy. This makes it easy to enroll in classes at your convenience.

3. Greenville Technical College

Type: Community College

Enrollment: 14,300

Tuition: $3,566 (in-state); $6,698 (out-of-state)

Best Programs: The Health Sciences & Nursing Division at Greenville Technical College is quite extensive, with programs ranging from animal studies to radiologic technology.

Fun Fact: In order to make its academic resources more accessible, Greenville Technical College operates about a half-dozen campuses throughout South Carolina.

2. Clemson University

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 17,585

Tuition: $10,370 (in-state); $22,300 (out-of-state)

Best Program: About 30 percent of Clemson University undergrads choose a major in the physical sciences.

Fun Fact: Most of Clemson’s research activity, from agricultural studies to public policy, is dedicated to community outreach.

1. University of South Carolina

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 27,272

Tuition: $8,346 (in-state); $21,632 (out-of-state)

Best Program: The University of South Carolina’s international business program, offered through the Darla Moore School of Business, is ranked among the country’s best.

Fun Fact: In 2012, the University of South Carolina Honors College was ranked first among public universities.

Quick Tips

  • Remember to fill out the FAFSA! The South Carolina Department of Education offers various forms of need-based financial aid, and institutional tuition assistance is usually also available.
  • All of the colleges listed here are public, but South Carolina has its fair share of private colleges. Many of these, such as Southern Methodist College, have religious affiliations.
  • Transferring can help you save on tuition, since many South Carolina technical colleges have transfer agreements with four-year colleges in the state.

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