BANNER ELK, N.C. —In an increase from last year’s No. 23 spot, Lees-McRae College landed at No. 19 as best regional college in the South in addition to a spot on the “Best Value School” list in the newest evaluation released by U.S. News & World Report.
U.S. News assessed more than 1,800 institutions, and considered numerous factors such as student population, graduation and retention rates, reputation, student selectivity, faculty and financial resources and percentage of graduates who give back as alumni.
As for the Best Value ranking, the “calculation took into account a school’s academic quality, as indicated by its 2018 U.S. News Best Colleges ranking, and the 2016-2017 net cost of attendance for a student who received the average level of need-based financial aid,” according to the U.S. News & World Report website. “The higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal.”
“Only schools ranked in or near the top half of their categories are included, because U.S. News considers the most significant values to be among colleges that are above average academically,” added the U.S. News website.
U.S. News & World Report, an online resource for up-to-date rankings and advice on subjects including education, health, money, travel and more, releases its annual rankings to highlight the most cutting-edge programming.
The four-place bump in ranking can be attributed in part to improvements in retention and graduation rates, as well as increased peer recognition during the previous academic year.
“Lees-McRae is an institution with a commitment to continued improvement,” said Lees-McRae President Barry Buxton.
Learn more about Lees-McRae’s ranking on the U.S. News & World Report’s “Regional Colleges South” report and “Best Value School” ranking, here.