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In College-Guide Season, WC Breaks New Ground
CHESTERTOWN, MD, September 10, 2013— Tis the season for annual updates of college guides, rankings and lists, and Washington College is breaking new ground.
For the first year ever, Washington College has been included in the highly respected Fiske Guide to Colleges. Founded and still led by former New York Times higher-education reporter Edward Fiske, the guide is in its 30th year of recommending the “best and most interesting colleges and universities” in the nation. Washington College is one of 344 schools in the U.S., Canada, Britain and Ireland to be included in the 2014 edition. The Fiske editors describe WC in part as “on the move with upgraded facilities, an expanding student body and innovative offerings in creative writing, American history and environmental studies.”
Late last month, Washington Monthly magazine named Washington College to its new list of colleges that offer the “Best-Bang-for-the-Buck,” which it defines as colleges in the U.S. that “do the best job of helping non-wealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices.”
The Princeton Review again named WC as one of its Best 378 Colleges for 2014. It bases its assessments on both institutional data and student surveys. Based on student surveys, the guide describes Washington College as all about “gaining a distinctive and strong education in the liberal arts through personalized programs and hands-one experience, ” and a place where “students learn to think outside the box while becoming better people and having the time of their lives.” Campus life is rated, “as good as a college experience can get,” and the faculty is praised as “world class professors” who love to teach and “bend over backwards to ensure your education.”
“To know that this portrait of Washington College is coming directly from the students gives the Princeton Review’s guide credibility and makes it a great resource for families,” says WC’s new V.P. for Enrollment Management, Satyajit Dattagupta.
Released today, the controversial but influential U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings for 2014 list WC at #107 out of the 180 top-tier private liberal arts colleges that made the list. (The magazine also lists second-tier schools and regional universities in its annual package.) Washington College has been up and down in the U.S. News rankings over the past five years, from #112 in 2010 to #93 in 2011, then from #110 in 2012 up to #96 for 2013. “Even a slight change in the magazine’s methodology or a small change in our data can cause us to drop or rise a few positions,” explains Dale Trusheim, WC’s Assistant Provost for Institutional Research and Assessment.
President Mitchell Reiss says, “it’s wonderful to see Washington College acknowledged and recommended in publications such as Fiske, Princeton Review and U.S. News. Notwithstanding the occasional dip in numerical rankings, the College has steadily climbed into solid top-tier status,” he adds. “I have no doubt that trend will continue, because we continue to offer one of the best liberal arts educations in the country.”