NEIT offers a different approach to education focusing on vocational training in areas such as automotive technology, nursing, occupational therapy, building science (architectural assistants), boating engineering, Software Engineering Technology, Network Engineering Technology, and Cyber Security Technology. They offer both associate and bachelor degrees in these areas competing in some specialties with community colleges.
NEIT is housed in three separate locations that look like office parks, rather than a college campus. The third and newest location is a former corporate headquarters for Brooks pharmacy. This “campus” has several areas for students to congregate.
NEIT is a commuter school and also has many adult students who have returned to get their degrees. The novel thing about NEIT is its total focus on hands on, vocational training, aimed at the student who learns by doing and not by theory. Some of the program facilities were impressive, such as the automotive technology building, which replicated a dealer repair shop. The architectural sciences facilities were also impressive as we saw students learning how to draw using computers even beyond CAD drawings.
Students (except for nursing students) skewed largely towards male. They looked like what you would imagine shop students or video gaming fans would look like, unkempt hair, baggy jeans, graphic t-shirts, and scruffy beards.
While impressed with many of the facilities, I kept asking the question, what is the typical pay for most of the jobs upon graduation. The tuition is $28,000 per year and they boast that students can complete their associate degree in only 18 months through their accelerated program. This is no doubt an advantage, but I could not get a straight answer about salaries, retention rates, and average debt upon graduation. Given that the program is so focused on career/vocational training, I became suspect with the vague responses regarding their success on that front. A fellow counselor from Rhode Island said that it is a popular option because of the accelerated degree and excellent training. On that point, I do not disagree, however, I would want to have more information on my return on investment since the programs are geared specifically for job training.