UC Davis was ranked 27 in a ranking of the 50 best universities in the United States, published by The Best Colleges on Aug. 8.
The Best Colleges board of editors decides the methodology and criteria. For the 2011-12 year, the rankings were based on the economic value of a school and the quality of life offered.
“We decided this in light of the current economic situation of the country, in which people are especially budget conscious as well as the present state of higher education, in which tuition costs are on the rise and students are taking longer than ever to graduate,” said Jeremy Alder, managing editor of The Best Colleges, in an e-mail interview.
UC Davis scored very well in both economic value and quality of life, Alder said.
“With the school’s generous financial aid policy, UC Davis students end up with a really good deal, especially in light of the school’s track record of producing graduates who go on to well-paying careers,” he said.
Alder added that the city of Davis’ fairly youthful and well-educated population, with a relatively low cost of living, also helped secure its spot in the top 50 colleges and universities.
“[This ranking] means UC Davis is one of the very best universities in America in terms of economic value, quality of life, academic quality, and student satisfaction,” Alder said.
Mitchel Benson, associate vice chancellor for University Communications, said that while most students, staff and faculty do not base their decision to attend UC Davis solely on rankings, the rankings do help place Davis into consideration for some.
“UC Davis is a world-class research university that does attract some of the best and brightest students, staff and faculty not just from across the country but also from around the world,” Benson said in an e-mail interview.
In addition to UC Davis’ acclaim for academic breadth and collaborative approach, UC Davis is known for innovation when it comes the world’s most pressing challenges, including food, water, health, society, energy and environmental issues. In addition, UC Davis has a beautiful campus, a loyal alumni base and is located in a vibrant college town in Northern California, one of the most technologically advanced regions in the world, Benson said.
“All those factors, taken together make UC Davis worthy of the attention, laurels and awards that it receives,” Benson said.
– Akshaya Ramanujam