SUNY Fredonia has once again been named by "Kiplinger's Personal Finance" magazine's list of the 100 best values in public colleges.
The ranking cites four-year public colleges and universities that combine outstanding education with economic value. They are based on a combination of academics and affordability, according to its website, and compare the cost of tuition, fees, room and board for both in-state and out-of-state students at nearly 600 public four-year institutions across the country.
SUNY Fredonia ranks 97th in the U.S. in the 2014 listing for in-state enrollees, "thanks to its high four-year graduation rate, low average student debt at graduation, abundant financial aid, a low sticker price, and overall great value," according to ranking organizers. SUNY Fredonia is also ranked 67th on the Best Value list for out-of-state students, which helps to not only increase the campus' diversity, but also aids the local economy by bringing more visitors to the region.
According to a press release issued by the magazine earlier today, the rankings assess quality according to a number of measurable standards, including the admission rate, the percentage of students who return for sophomore year, the student-faculty ratio and the four-year graduation rate. Cost criteria include low "sticker prices," abundant financial aid and low average debt at graduation, which at SUNY Fredonia is nearly 7 percent below the national average.
"We are pleased once again to be recognized as a Kiplinger's 'Best Value,'" said SUNY Fredonia Director of Public Relations Mike Barone. "We consistently speak with prospective students and families about Fredonia's affordability, as well as the heavy emphasis we place on the ability to graduate in four years. In fact, our four-year graduation rate alone would have placed Fredonia 50th on this list."
"The college landscape today is very different - tuition increases and student debt dominate the national conversation surrounding higher education," said Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger's Personal Finance. "This year's top 100 schools have made admirable strides to maintain academic integrity and standards while meeting the financial needs of their students."
"This ranking represents the across-the-board hard work performed consistently by all Fredonia employees, from the strong academic advising and instructional quality given to students by our faculty, to the guidance provided by our Admissions and Financial Aid teams," Barone added. "We work very hard to help students identify and obtain scholarships and other forms of financial relief, stay on track toward graduation, and obtain what we believe is a public education unlike any other in the State of New York."
Fredonia was one of nine SUNY schools included in this year's rankings, sparked largely by the consistently low tuition found across the SUNY system. Undergraduate tuition rose by $300 in 2013-14 to $5,870 for New York State residents, while out-of-state residents saw a $500 increase to $15,320. Total estimated in-state costs to attend Fredonia are $19,020 - less than half of the national average of $40,917 for private schools, according to the article.
The annual public school rankings appear in Kiplinger's Personal Finance February 2014 issue, on newsstands Dec. 31, and online today at: www.kiplinger.com/links/college.