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W&M among the nation's best in U.S. News ranking

By Erin Zagursky September 9, 2015

William & Mary has once again been counted among the nation’s top colleges and universities by U.S. News and World Report.

In the media company’s annual college rankings, released today, the university is the top public institution in the country and fourth overall for undergraduate teaching. William & Mary is also ranked sixth amongpublic colleges and universities and tied for 34th overall among national universities.

Additionally, the university is tied at 27th in a ranking byhigh school counselors and tied for 28th on a list of best colleges for veterans. William & Mary’s undergraduate business program was also tied for 39th in the nation.

The U.S. News report is the latest of several college rankings released recently. Yesterday, The Princeton Review published a book featuring “Colleges That Create Futures,” and William & Mary is the only Virginia institution among the 50 schools profiled within. The Princeton Review selected colleges for the unranked list based on surveys of administrators at hundreds of universities between 2013 and 2015 and of 18,000 students attending the schools. The Princeton Reviewalso conducted 200 interviews with current faculty, administrators and alumni of schools in making its choices of the final 50 colleges featured in the book.

According to the William & Mary profile on the website, one student said: "William & Mary achieves a remarkable balance between the dynamic, progressive academics of a liberal arts college and the strong sense of history and tradition one would expect from America’s second-oldest school.”

In August, William & Mary was included in The Princeton Review’s guide to the nation’s top 380 colleges. Among that book’s multiple top-20 rankings, the university was ninth on the list of colleges where the students are most engaged in community service and 17th on the list of best college libraries. Later that month, William & Mary was ranked 17th for community service participation and 35th among national universities in a report by The Washington Monthly. And in July, William & Mary was listed at third among state schools (sixth including military institutions) in Forbes’ eighth annual ranking of “America’s Top Colleges.” The university also ranked 39th among both public and private colleges in that report. College Factual, in partnership with USA Todayand The Wall Street Journal Asia, also released its college rankings this week. On that list, William & Mary was ranked 53rd nationwide.

U.S. News based its rankings on a number of factors, including assessment of excellence (by peers and counselors), graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate performance (the difference between actual and predicted graduation rates) and alumni giving.

Princeton University took the top spot on this year’s ranking of national universities, followed by Harvard and Yale.

Last year, William & Mary ranked tied for 33rd in the U.S. News national ranking. The university was sixth among public universities. This year’s rankings are available online and will be on newsstands as the "Best Colleges 2016" guidebook Sept. 29.