Feb 6, 2013

UVa tops the List of ‘Best Value’ Public Colleges

University of Virginia

According to a new ranking released yesterday by the Princeton Review in partnership with USA TODAY, the University of Virginia offers the ‘best value’ in the nation among public universities.

The annual list recognizes America’s top undergraduate public and private universities offering outstanding academics, generous financial aid, and/or a relatively low cost of attendance.

This year, UVa moved past the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill—last year’s No. 1—to earn Princeton Review’s highest ranking for public universities.

This distinction follows closely on the heels of a second place finish on Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges for 2013—just behind UNC.

“The University of Virginia has earned its reputation for quality and affordability,” U.Va. President Teresa A. Sullivan said. “The recognition is appreciated and deserved. It reflects the quality and dedication of our faculty and the success of those who manage our finances and operations.”

The Princeton Review selected its 150 best values—75 public and 75 private—based on data collected at 650 institutions identified as having “excellent academics.”  The list features schools in 25 states and the District of Columbia, with California having the most colleges represented (19), followed by New York (18), and Massachusetts (14).

Following UVa and Chapel Hill in the ranking of public universities are New College of Florida, the College of William & Mary, and UCLA.  Rounding out the top ten are:  North Carolina State University, the University of Wisconsin, State University of New York at Binghamton, the University of Michigan, and the University of Georgia.  Locally, Christopher Newport, George Mason, James Madison, Longwood, Virginia Tech, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, UMBC, and the University of Maryland-College Park were also named to the list.

University of Richmond
Among the nation’s private colleges, the University of Richmond maintains its perfect record of being named a Princeton Review ‘best value’ for 10 straight years—each year since the project originated in 2004.  Georgetown University is the only other local private institution to earn a spot on the list.

We are pleased by this recognition of the university’s excellent academic programs,” said Richmond’s president, Edward L. Ayers, “and of our commitment to financial aid that ensures Richmond’s exceptional experience remains accessible to qualified students regardless of their financial circumstances.” 

The Princeton Review's "Best Value Colleges" list appears in two free online resources and a companion book. The list and profiles of the schools at http://www.princetonreview.com/best-value-colleges.aspxUSA TODAY posted an exclusive "Best Value Colleges" interactive database at a dedicated area on USATODAY.com: http://bestvaluecolleges.usatoday.com.  There, users can access detailed information about each college and sort the list several ways including by state, tuition, enrollment, and average freshman grant. 

Disclosure:  Nancy Griesemer is on the Princeton Review National College Counselor Advisory Board, 2012-2013.

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