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William & Mary schools and programs do well in recent rankings

William & Mary’s programs in business, education and history made strides in U.S. News and World Report magazine’s annual rankings of graduate and professional schools. The U.S. News rankings are the latest of several released this spring that have highlighted various aspects of William & Mary.

In the 2018 report, released this week, the university’s graduate history program, which is included in the U.S. News report just every four years, is tied at 27th compared to 36th in the 2014 ranking, and the colonial history program held its spot as third in the nation. College Magazine also recently ranked William & Mary the number one school for history buffs.

“The history department is delighted to hear that our graduate program has maintained its third place ranking in colonial history and has risen significantly in the rankings for its graduate program overall,” said Frederick Corney, professor and chair of the W&M Department of History. “Our faculty have worked hard over the past few years to expand the range of our graduate offerings and to attract the very best graduate students to our program. The caliber of those students is the best testament to that hard work.”

The rankings were released just one week after SmartAsset, a financial technology company, named Virginia the best state in the country for higher education based an analysis of the graduation rate, student-faculty ratio, in-state attendance, net price for students receiving financial aid and return on investment for graduates of four-year, public colleges and universities.

Also in the U.S. News report, the full-time graduate program at the Raymond A. Mason School of Business is tied at 57th, up from 71st last year. The W&M School of Education also improved this year to tied at 46th from 55th, and is one of the smallest schools of education to be ranked in the top 50.

Additionally, the university’s Flex M.B.A. program is tied at 16th in the nation, up a whopping 50 spots from 66th last year.

“We are pleased to see the remarkable work done by our faculty and staff rewarded by such a dramatic increase in the national rankings for our Flex M.B.A. program,” said Larry Pulley, dean of the Raymond A. Mason School of Business. “The rankings can be mysterious at times, but moving up 50 spots in a single year is a huge endorsement of the quality of the program, the effectiveness of our faculty and the hard work and caliber of the students our staff recruits.

“Our Flex program is an extremely important part of our academic portfolio. Along with our Online MBA program, it will be instrumental in helping us reach new markets of working professionals and distance learners as we fulfill our mission to prepare the next generation of business leaders for lives of principled achievement.”

The William & Mary Law School tied for 41st, according to the U.S. News report. It was one of several recent rankings involving the law school. For example, the law school was 30th on National Law Journal’s 2017 list of Top 50 Go-To Law Schools, which is based on the percentage of 2016 graduates who were hired by the nation’s 100 largest law firms. The law school was also ranked sixth among the Top 10 Military Friendly Graduate Schools in the February 2017 issue of Victory Media’s G.I. Jobs and in the 2017 Guide to Military Friendly Schools. In 2016, it was tied at 23rd on Above the Law’s Top 50 Law Schools list.

In January, College Choice ranked W&M’s master’s program in education 48th in the country. That same month, William & Mary was ranked 52nd among the best schools in the nation by College Factual and included in The Princeton Review’s list of Colleges That Pay You Back: The 200 Schools That Give You the Best Bang for Your Tuition Buck.

In February, William & Mary was ranked among the top producers of Peace Corps volunteers among the nation’s colleges and universities. With 36 alumni currently volunteering, the university was fourth among medium schools (5,000-15,000 undergraduates) on the Peace Corps’ annual list. Also last month, the university received its first Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System rating — silver — from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, which W&M has been a part of since 2010. STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for universities to measure their sustainability performance, and over 800 institutions worldwide participate in the program. STARS ratings range from platinum to bronze.