INDIANAPOLIS — With acceptance letters from 65 colleges and universities across the country, 18-year-old Taran Richardson had quite a decision to make.

Richardson, this year's salutatorian of Charles A. Tindley Accelerated High School in Indianapolis, applied to over 70 schools, he said. In all, he counted more than $1 million in scholarship offers.

He narrowed the list to the Top 20. Then the Top 15. For a month and a half, he mulled over the Top 10, comparing their academic programs, reviewing financial aid packages he was offered. What the decision ultimately came down to, he said, was the school that had the best of the above and offered the most inviting atmosphere. The place he felt most at home during his visit

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