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Wall Street Journal Ranks SUNY Cortland Among Nation’s Best Colleges

Wall Street Journal Ranks SUNY Cortland Among Nation’s Best Colleges


Is a SUNY Cortland education worth the investment? The Wall Street Journal thinks so.

For the second consecutive year, the world’s premier business news source listed SUNY Cortland as one of the best colleges in the nation in the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education 2019 College Rankings.

The annual ranking, which focuses on how well a college prepares students for life after graduation, highlighted SUNY Cortland’s successful student outcomes and strong student engagement.

SUNY Cortland was the second-highest ranking SUNY comprehensive college in the 2019 report, which identifies what the organization determines are the best 500 four-year colleges in the United States. In a country with more than 3,000 four-year, degree-granting higher education institutions, that’s roughly the top 16 percent.

“SUNY Cortland offers a high-quality education at an affordable price, and that’s the foundation for success in today’s economy,” SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum said. “Our faculty and staff work tirelessly to help students pursue their career dreams, and we are gratified by this recognition.”

It is far from the first. Earlier this year, Money magazine ranked SUNY Cortland in the top 5 percent of all four-year colleges in the United States as a “Best College for Your Money.” US News &World Report consistently includes SUNY Cortland on its annual list of "Best Universities in the Northeast," again placing it among the top 100 colleges in the highly competitive region for 2019.  The Sierra Club named SUNY Cortland on its annual “Cool Schools” list of the nation’s most environmentally-friendly universities. The College was also recognized for excellence in programs including kinesiology, special education and sport management.

The Wall Street Journal rankings use a variety of data sources, including the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and Times Higher Education’s U.S. Student Survey of 200,000 current student voices. Colleges were ordered based on weighted categories including resources, engagement, environment and outcomes.

SUNY Cortland scored particularly well in outcomes, which measures academic reputation, graduation rate and a pair of value-added indicators: salary and ability to repay student debt. Times Higher Education used statistical modelling to create expected graduate salaries and loan default rates that tell how each college exceeds expectations in getting students higher average salaries than one would predict.

The engagement metric attempts to determine how well each college manages to inform, inspire and challenge its students and how much students immerse themselves in the intellectual and social life of their college.

SUNY Cortland placed No. 484 overall in the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Rankings, trailing only SUNY New Paltz among SUNY comprehensive colleges. The College ranked No. 338 nationally in outcomes and was No. 424 in engagement.