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Binghamton ranks among nation’s best

By : Rachel Coker

For the 11th consecutive year, Binghamton University is ranked among the nation’s top 50 public universities, according to the 2008 edition of “America’s Best Colleges” by U.S. News & World Report.

According to the latest edition of the magazine, which hit newsstands Aug. 20, Binghamton University ranks 37th among public universities and colleges and 82nd among all universities. Binghamton is the top-ranked public school in New York.
“I am very proud that Binghamton University has once again been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s best universities,” President Lois B. DeFleur said. “Binghamton consistently ranks among the elite public institutions due to its excellent reputation among peer institutions and the quality of its students, faculty and staff. We work very hard to be an exceptional university and these rankings validate those efforts.”

The annual U.S. News & World Report rankings represent the most comprehensive look at how schools stack up based on a set of 15 widely accepted indicators of excellence. The rankings help parents and students evaluate and compare data compiled from more than 1,400 accredited four-year schools.

U.S. News conside

rs academic reputation, retention, student-to-faculty ratios, student selectivity and alumni giving rate, among other factors. This year, Binghamton rose from 38th to 37th place in the public university list and from 86th to 82nd place overall.

“The rankings are an opportunity for families to begin to narrow their choices,” said Cheryl Brown, director of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. “It gives them a jumping-off point. Then families need to do some exploring on their own so they can find the best fit for them.”

While each family has to make its own decisions about what’s important, Brown noted that many students ultimately choose to stay within four or five hours of home. Beyond geographical considerations, Brown said, it’s important for a student to fit in academically and socially.

“Look for a campus with a full array of activities, not only for fun but to develop leadership skills,” she said.

Binghamton also continues to win accolades from other college guides.

The 2008 edition of Fiske Guide to Colleges again calls the University the “premier public university in the Northeast,” citing the school’s emphasis on collaboration over competition, independent research and acc

essible faculty members. The book also highlights the Binghamton Scholars Program, Late Nite Binghamton and the Turkish dual-degree program.

“With a four-year graduation rate that is among the highest of any public university, Binghamton has a reputation for an excellent education at a reasonable price that continues to draw smart New Yorkers to its vibrant and growing campus,” the book states. “Despite the hubbub of city life, the university maintains a cozy feel.”

The Fiske Guide also lists Binghamton among the “best buys” at public institutions. Tuition for state residents is $4,350 for 2007-08; non-residents pay $10,610.

The Princeton Review’s new guidebook, titled The Best 366 Colleges, also includes an entry about Binghamton. The publication cites the University’s great computer facilities and library, diverse student body and safe campus.

Brown noted that the geographic diversity of Binghamton’s student body is increasing. “More students outside New York realize the quality and value of a Binghamton education,” she said. “And many of the students say they heard about Binghamton through one of the guidebooks that have highlighted the University in the past few years.”

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Last Updated: 10/14/08