Holy Cross, Clark + WPI Named Top Colleges by Forbes
Thursday, July 25, 2013
The annual ranking of the 650 best undergraduate institutions focuses on “the factors that directly concern today’s incoming students (and their families),” says Forbes. Partnered with the Center for College Affordability and Productivity (CCAP), the magazine looks into the “input” and “output” of higher education and what undergraduates get out of their education during their four years in college and after graduation.
Ups and downs
Although Holy Cross lead the other two Central Mass schools with its #71 spot on the list, the college did slide down 30 spots from last year’s impressive rank of #41. However, Holy Cross was not the only Central Mass college to fall from its 2012 rank. Clark also moved down from #128 to #150. Brighter news for WPI since last year as it moved up from last year’s surprising #239 spot to this year’s #136 spot.
The Forbes formula
According to Forbes, this year’s list marked a new theme of “rapidly changing landscape in higher education” in that for the first time, two non-Ivies took over the top spots: Stanford University at #1 and Pomona College at #2. With two California schools ranked as the two best colleges, this shift indicates an opening for “a more diverse, accessible portfolio of best schools for students,” extending beyond the more prominently known East Coast colleges.
The magazine calculates each college through the CCAP methodology based on five categories. Here is the breakdown of each category:
- Post Graduate Success (37.5%): evaluates pay and prominence of alumni
- Student Satisfaction (22.5%): includes student evaluations on professors and student retention rates
- Student Debt (17.5%): penalizes schools for high student debt loads and default rates
- Graduation Rate (11.25%): evaluates the actual and predicated graduation rate in four years
- Nationally Competitive Awards (11.25%): Rewards schools whose students win prestigious scholarships and fellowships like the Rhodes, the Marshall and the Fulbright or go one to earn a Ph.D.
For a full list of ranking, click here.
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