Hosting a presidential debate isn't cheap.

The cost of playing host for Lynn University, the Boca Raton, Fla. site of Monday's third and final presidential debate is $5 million.

Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., which last week hosted the second presidential debate, shelled out $4.5 million. That's the same amount Hofstra spent in 2009 on its now disbanded football team. Centre College in Kentucky spent $3.3 million getting ready to be the host this year's vice-presidential debate.

Mike McCurry, co-chairman of the Commission on Presidential Debates, told The Daily Beast many schools end up being scared away when they learn the debates require a financial commitment of $1.5 million at a minimum. (Despite that cost, two of 2012's host schools were repeats; Hofstra hosted a debate in 2008, and Centre hosted one in 2000.)

The University of Denver was the largest school to host a debate this year. Schools that host the debates are typically smaller, lesser-known institutions seeking to get a boost in recognition, applications and alumni donations.

For example, Lynn is only 50 years old, and WLRN reports the college has struggled with lower-than-average graduation rates.

Before the Commission on Presidential Debates was created in 1987, debates were held in television studios or auditoriums. Meena Bose, director of Hofstra’s Peter S. Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency, told The Huffington Post that holding the debates on university and college campuses can have its advantages for the campaigns.

"University and college campuses are an ideal setting because, of course, they reach our youth voters," Bose said, "and in many cases, students who will be voting for the very first time."

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  • Harvard University

    Harvard was founded in 1636 in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. It was chartered in 1650, making it the oldest institution of higher education in the U.S.

  • College of William and Mary

    W&M was founded and chartered in 1693 in the Colony and Dominion of Virginia by King William III and Queen Mary II of England. Presidents Thomas Jefferson, John Tyler and James Monroe received their undergraduate degree from W&M. William and Mary is also famous for founding the first Greek-letter society, Phi Beta Kappa, during the Revolutionary War in 1776.

  • Yale University

    Founded and chartered in 1701 in the Connecticut Colony, Yale was previously known as the Collegiate School. During the American Revolution, Yale graduates served as influential leaders- 25 served in the Continental Congress and four graduates signed the Declaration of Independence.

  • Princeton University

    Founded and chartered in 1746 in the Province of New Jersey, Princeton was first originally known as the College of New Jersey. Nassau Hall, the oldest building on Princeton's campus, was once used as barracks and a hospital by both the British and American soldiers during the Revolutionary War.

  • University of Pennsylvania

    Founded in 1740 and chartered in 1755, UPenn established the first Medical School in the American colonies in 1765. Also the Continental Congress met at College Hall on campus in 1778 during the Revolutionary War.

  • Columbia University

    Founded and chartered in 1754, Columbia was originally named King's College. Though the college was forced to suspend instruction in 1776 due to the Revolutionary War its earliest students included influentials such as Alexander Hamilton and Robert Livingston, a member of the committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence

  • Brown University

    Founded and chartered in 1764, Brown was first known as the College of Rhode Island. Brown was the first Ivy League school to accept students from all religious affiliations.

  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

    Founded and chartered in 1766, Rutgers was first known as Queen's College. In 1776, John Taylor, the college's tutor, joined the Revolutionary Army as a captain.

  • Dartmouth College

    Founded and chartered in 1769, Dartmouth is the ninth oldest college in the U.S. and the last college to be chartered before the American Revolution.