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Colorado grads with these associate degrees earn the most

Private, for-profit schools could be a good option for students looking to make a big impact on their salary in a short period of time.

DENVER — A two-year degree can really pay off — if you're enrolled in a nursing or dental program, that is, or interested in working in criminal justice.

That's the big takeaway from a DBJ analysis of U.S. Department of Education data for COlorado. Another big takeaway? Private, for-profit schools could be a good option for students looking to make a big impact on their salary in a short period of time.

Two of the top three degree programs that send their graduates off with a healthy salary are for-profit nursing schools. Still, the Colorado Community College System made a good showing — 10 of the system's 13 schools made the cut and it dominates the list overall.

The raw data show median earnings, in-state tuition rates and post-graduation median debt loads, among other statistics, connected to degree type and level across the nation. DBJ sorted that data, ranking bachelor's degrees by median earning, to show the top 25 in Colorado.

Click here to view the top 25 associate degree programs, ranked by median salary upon graduation.

> Above video: Tips on landing a job in Colorado.

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