The College of William and Mary remains one of the country’s best values in public colleges, according to the latest ranking by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine. In its annual report, William & Mary ranks fifth among the magazine’s top 100 public universities that combine "outstanding economic value with top-notch education." William & Mary, which consistently ranks in the magazine's best bargains, is also featured on Kiplinger's Web site with an audio slideshow and online tour of the country’s second oldest College.
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"We’re pleased once again to be recognized by Kiplinger's as one of the country’s best values in higher education," said William & Mary President Taylor Reveley.
The rankings, which will appear in the December 2008 issue of the magazine that hits newsstands next month, are currently on the magazine's Web site at www.kiplinger.com/money/collegevalues. The report is based on data collected from more than 500 public, four-year colleges and universities. Schools are ranked according to academic quality -- using such factors as admission rates, freshmen retention rates, student-faculty ratios, graduation rates, cost and financial aid. Topping the list for the eighth year in a row is the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Other Virginia public universities included in the top 100 list include the University of Virginia (3rd), Virginia Tech (15th), University of Mary Washington (23rd), James Madison University (28th) and George Mason University (46th). William & Mary was ranked the fourth-best value among public universities last year.
"With the economic turmoil of 2008, families of all income levels are feeling the financial pinch," Kiplinger's Editor Fred Frailey said in a press release on the rankings. "But schools like these prove that an excellent education is still available at an affordable price."
The Kiplinger's list comes on the heels of several of national rankings released in recent months featuring William and Mary. In August, William & Mary was listed 32nd overall – up from 33rd a year ago -- and sixth-best public university, according to U.S. News & World Report. Earlier in August, the College was ranked 49th overall – based on a different methodology – by Forbes magazine. In July Forbes also ranked the Commonwealth of Virginia as the country's best state for business. Virginia topped the Forbes list, according to the article, in part because of "top colleges like the University of Virginia and William & Mary. In July, the Princeton Review also ranked William and Mary and its Swem Library eighth in the category of "Best College Library." More recently, this week Financial Times ranked the William & Mary's Mason School of Business’ Executive MBA program as one of the top 100 programs in the world. The program ranked 41st among U.S. schools and 94th worldwide.