Eight of top 25 public college grad rates are in Md., Va.
I have posted before on the strikingly high graduation rates at top public universities in Virginia and Maryland. One could make a case, for example, that the University of Virginia and the College of William and Mary are the two best state universities in terms of college completion.
Here's another entry in that category. Lynn O'Shaughnessy, a journalist and blogger, has compiled a list of the 25 public colleges and universities of any type with the highest four-year (not six-year) graduation rates. The list lumps the service academies together with research universities such as U-Va. and liberal arts schools such as St. Mary's College of Maryland.
And, voila, we learn that Virginia and Maryland together have eight of those top 25 institutions.
Note that her method -- using a four-year completion rate -- favors schools serving full-time students who can afford to stay at the same school for four years, a scenario common among middle-class suburbanites but not typical of the nation as a whole.
Here is her list.
1. United States Naval Academy, graduation rate 86%
2. University of Virginia, 85%
3. College of William and Mary, 82%
4. United Air Force Academy, 79%
5. United State Military Academy, 76%
6. United State Coast Guard Academy, 75%
7. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 73%
8. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 70%
9. University of Mary Washington, 70%
10. James Madison University, 68%
11.Miami University (OH), 68%
12. The College of New Jersey, 68%
13. St. Mary's College of Maryland, 67%
14. University of Delaware, 67%
15. UCLA, 65%
16. University of California, Berkeley, 64%
17. University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 64%
18. SUNY at Binghamton, NY, 64%
19. United State Merchant Marines, 64%
20. University of Maryland-College Park, 63%
21. University of California, Irvine, 60%
22. Penn State University-Main Campus, 60%
23. Citadel Military College of South Carolina, 59%
24. Virginia Military Institute, 59%
25. SUNY at Geneseo, NY, 58%
Where's the University of Texas? Indiana University? The University of Washington?
I looked up UT. Its six-year graduation rate is 80 percent. But its four-year rate is just 50 percent. Does that make UT somehow less than world-class? Or is this about the undeniable allure of Austin?
On a related theme, Maryland leaders gathered this week to formally adopt the goal of 55 percent college completion by 2025, a mark that several of its institutions have already met.
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Daniel de Vise
| February 2, 2011; 3:23 PM ET
Categories: Attainment, Publics, Rankings | Tags: college completion, completion rates, graduation rates, public university completion rates, top colleges
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