4. Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J.
Programs: Theater majors are expected to pull their own weight, both academically and in terms of productions. Boasting an astounding 15 to 18 productions a year, the department also holds classes in global theater, clothing and culture, and the 20th-century avant-garde; Tuition: Non–New Jersey residents, $37,805; Notable alumni: Andrea Anders, Roger Bart, Michael Esper, Jane Krakowski, Tom Pelphrey; Professional opportunities: Half an hour outside New York City, Rutgers students have plenty of chances to attend (and audition for) NYC theater. In addition, graduating B.F.A. and M.F.A. students are presented to the casting community each year.