The University of Massachusetts in Amherst, or UMASS as it is known in these parts, was recently ranked as one of the world’s top 200 universities by a British newspaper. UMASS was the only public university in New England to make the top 200 according to an article in the Boston Globe.
The Boston Globe’s Metro Desk column reports that UMass ranked 56th in the Times of London’s Top 200. The five campus Massachusetts University system ranked fourth in New England, behind the prestigious private Masachussetts universities Harvard, MIT, and Tufts.
UMASS rated 33rd top university in U.S.
UMASS, ranked as the 33rd best American institution, public or private, the university told the Globe. It was also rated as the 14th highest ranked public university in the U.S, after public universities in California, Michigan, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Washington, and Minnesota
Globe story follows controversial report about UMASS problems
Earlier this month, the Globe published a front page story in its Sunday edition which essentially made the point that Massachusetts young people were rejecting UMASS in favor of attending out of state public universities. MA students pay in state tuition at UMASS which can make the cost of college more affordable. So, the fact MA students would prefer to go out of state may say something about the quality of a UMASS education, at least according to the Globe story.
Globe report whipped up strong reaction in Boston and Massachusetts.
Essentially, the first Globe report earlier in September said that “despite improvement efforts that date back generations, the UMass flagship, depleted by budget cuts, has had trouble cracking the ranks of the nation’s top schools.”As reported by the Globe, that article generated a storm of criticism from university officials, students, and alumni. Ratings and rankings of colleges and universities abound these days. Considering the “sticker price” of higher education, these ratings often make headlines and get parents and students in a tizzy. Last week, The Daily Beast came out with its ratings of the most dangerous universities. Guess which universities appeared at the top of the list? Tufts was number one and Harvard placed in the Top Ten. Both schools were also also ranked highly by The Times of London as the best college in the world. Go figure.
So, what are parents and students to do about college rankings?
The Boston City Buzz says: Parents, please take these rankings and reports with a grain of salt and do your own research. What makes a college or university great, is what it offers to your son or daughter. So, read the reports and then make up your own mind. The bottom line is, students only get out of college what they put into it and one person’s “top university” is another’s “reject” and vice versa.
For more information: Read the Boston Globe report about UMASS
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