‘Best Colleges’ guidebook places university on best-of lists

Western Carolina University once again is ranked among the best universities in the South in two categories in the 2016 edition of the U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” guidebook released in September. The guidebook lists WCU as 13th among “top public regional universities” in the South, up two places from last year’s spot at 15th. The publication also has WCU tied with two other schools at No. 32 on a list of the “best regional universities” in the South, five places above last year’s ranking at No. 37 in that category.

The category in which WCU appears includes 618 higher education institutions that offer a wide range of bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and that tend to attract most of their students from surrounding states. In addition, Western Carolina ranked at No. 27 among institutions in the South for “best colleges for veterans” and at No. 90 nationally in the category of “best online programs.”

The annual rankings are based on a variety of indicators, including assessment by administrators at peer institutions, graduation rates, retention of students, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving.