Jan 232006
Authors: Joanna Thomas

Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine recently ranked CSU as one of the top 100 public colleges and universities.

CSU ranked 73rd in the magazine's annual 100 Best Values in Public Colleges and Rankings.

In a press release on Jan. 9, CSU President Larry Penley recognized the achievements of CSU.

"This ranking is an acknowledgement that Colorado State will continue to provide an excellent education at an affordable price," Penley said. "An achievement that is particularly notable given the budget challenges our state has faced in recent years."

Other schools making the list included the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and the University of Colorado at Boulder. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill topped the list, and University of Oregon came in at 100.

According to their Web site (http://www.kiplinger.com/personalfinance/tools/colleges/), Kiplinger's ranked schools based on several measures of academic quality including:

* Percentage of the 2004-05 freshman class scoring 600 or higher on the verbal and math components of the SAT or 24 or higher on the ACT

* Admission rates

* Freshman retention rates

* Student-faculty ratios

* Four- and six-year graduation rates

Additionally, Kiplinger's rated schools according to tuition costs and financial aid offered.

Sophomore mechanical engineering major Michael Porter said national rankings may be an attraction to some people, but was not a factor he considered when he chose CSU.

"To be perfectly honest I wanted to go to CU because I heard they had a good aerospace engineering program," Porter said. "But I didn't get into CU, and in hindsight I would have preferred to go here."

While Porter said the rankings didn't influence his decision it is plus. He said some students and incoming freshman probably look at the rankings in order to make a decision.

CSU spokesman Brad Bohlander said there are a variety of reasons students choose to come to CSU including quality, culture and career potential but reasons vary for individual students. He said a good number of students come to CSU because they like the community and culture CSU offers.

"The rankings from (Kiplinger's) and others are a good recognition of the school that CSU is," Bohlander said. "This (magazine) well recognizes the value and high quality at a fair price."

Bohlander said the emphasis of CSU is to provide the best quality education at an affordable price and does not cater year-to-year in order to change its rank.

"Although we're all pleased to get these rankings we don't seek to get them," Bohlander said. "But fortunately for us, our efforts are reflected in our rankings."

Joanna Thomas can be reached at campus@collegian.com

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