SUNY Fredonia has once again been named by Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine to its annual ranking of "The Kiplinger 100: Best Values in Public Colleges." The rankings recognize public colleges and universities 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 more than 500 public four-year institutions across the country.
SUNY Fredonia ranks 78th in the U.S. this year for in-state enrollees, consistent with the range Fredonia has been in since 2009, during which is has ranked between 87th and 65th. For out-of-state students this year, Fredonia fared even better, ranking 62nd in the nation.
According to a press release issued by Kiplinger's earlier today, the magazine revamped the rankings this year to give more weight to academic value, such as the percentage of students who return for sophomore year and the four-year graduation rate - two areas in which SUNY Fredonia has focused especially in recent years. Cost criteria include "low sticker prices, abundant financial aid and low average debt at graduation."
"As states cut funding for higher education and tuition continues to climb, the word 'value' becomes more significant than ever," said Jane Bennett Clark, senior editor at Kiplinger's Personal Finance. "This year's top 100 public schools deliver strong academics at reasonable prices. We applaud these institutions for tightening their belts without compromising quality."
"We are pleased to be recognized once again by Kiplinger's as a 'Best Value,'" said SUNY Fredonia Director of Public Relations Michael Barone. "It's always encouraging to have external entities recognize the quality educational experience that SUNY Fredonia offers. However, we consistently talk to prospective students and their families about this campus' affordability, as well as the emphasis we place on graduating in four years, so it's especially rewarding to be singled out for those attributes within this particular ranking."
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 just $300 in 2011-12 to $5,270 for New York State residents, while out-of-state residents saw a $940 increase to $14,320. Total estimated in-state costs to attend Fredonia are $16,978, below the national average for public universities of $17,131 and less than half of the national average of $38,589 for private schools, according to the magazine.
The annual public school rankings appear in Kiplinger's February 2012 issue, on newsstands today, and online at: www.kiplinger.com/links/college.