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08/27/2013

Winthrop Named One of America's Best Bang for the Buck Colleges by Washington Monthly

Quick Facts

 Washington Monthly has identified Winthrop University as one of America’s “Best Bang for the Buck Colleges,” according to the magazine’s 2013 College Guide Rankings edition.
 Nationally, Winthrop was ranked 93rd out of 349 public and private universities and colleges that were named “Best Bang for the Buck.”
 In the master’s degree-granting category for the value ranking, Winthrop came in at 37th out of 152 institutions.

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President Comstock
ROCK HILL, S.C. – Washington Monthly has identified Winthrop University as one of America’s “Best Bang for the Buck Colleges,” according to the magazine’s 2013 College Guide Rankings edition.

Nationally, Winthrop was ranked 93rd out of 349 public and private universities and colleges that were named “Best Bang for the Buck.” In the master’s degree-granting category for the value ranking, Winthrop came in at 37th out of 152 institutions. The only other South Carolina public institution to make both lists was The Citadel, which ranked 112th nationally and 48th in the master’s category.

To be included on the rankings’ list, institutions had to meet four criteria: at least 20 percent of students must be receiving Pell Grants, which go to students of modest means; have a graduation rate of at least 50 percent; the actual graduation rate must meet or exceed the rate that would be statistically predicted for that school given the number of lower-income students admitted; and the student loan default rate must be 10 percent or less. Once the list was generated on the four criteria, Washington Monthly then ranked the institutions based on net price of attendance.

Winthrop’s ranking pleased President Jayne Marie (Jamie) Comstock, who notes that serving students from all socio-economic backgrounds is central to the university’s mission, and that Winthrop offers its students the quality of a private university education at a public university price.

“In this season of rankings, any positive recognition of our efforts is a plus,” she said. “What is significant about this new list is that Winthrop is the top-ranked S.C. public institution across all sectors. That says we are doing a notable job serving Pell-eligible students—in fact, we have the highest percentage of Pell-eligible students among all publics in the Carolinas that made the list—as well as graduating all students at a higher rate than would be predicted given our student body mix. As such, this ranking adds an important perspective on the cost/value debate raging in our state and nationally.”

The magazine calls this new ranking an exclusive list of the colleges in America that do the best job of helping “nonwealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices.” The list is exclusive: out of the 1,572 colleges and universities included in the Washington Monthly’s total college rankings, only 349 made the cut as “best bang for the buck schools.” View the complete Washington Monthly value rankings.

Winthrop has consistently received third-party endorsements for its value and academic quality. Barron’s Best Buys has included Winthrop in its rankings, WiseChoice Research included the university in its list of Top 10 Value Schools that provide the "best bang for the buck," and AffordableCollegesOnline.org identified Winthrop as one of the top five South Carolina public universities with the greatest lifetime return on investment.

For more information, contact Judy Longshaw, news and media services manager, at 803/323-2404 or e-mail longshawj@winthrop.edu.

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