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Mason Makes Princeton Review's List of Best Value Colleges

Reprinted from the Mason Gazette, January 12, 2009

By Dave Andrews

Mason is one of the nation’s best values among undergraduate institutions, according to The Princeton Review.

The New York-based education services company features Mason on its list of America’s 100 “Best Value” colleges for 2009.

The guide profiles 50 public and 50 private colleges and universities. Of these 100 schools, the list ranks the top 10 public and the top 10 private. The remaining 80 are unranked and listed alphabetically. Mason is the only school in the Washington, D.C., region to be selected for the list.

“Our foremost goal at Mason is to provide students with the opportunity to enroll in academic programs of the highest caliber and work with outstanding scholars to prepare them to address the challenges of our nation and world,” says Mason President Alan Merten.

“This is why we are pleased to be part of this national grouping by The Princeton Review, as it speaks to our ongoing efforts to carry out this mission.”

The “best value” choices for 2009 are based on the surveys of administrators and students at more than 650 colleges and universities. The selection criteria consisted of more than 30 factors in three areas — academics, costs of attendance and financial aid — using data from each institution’s 2007-08 academic year. Also, more than 160,000 student surveys provided input for the academic ratings.

In its profile on the list, Mason is applauded for arriving “at an impressive reputation in less than a quarter of the time it has taken for schools of comparable quality. The school has taken a proactive approach to developing its curriculum (58 undergraduate majors and counting) and campuses, ensuring that the school will be recognized as a top university. It’s location near Washington, D.C., means that students looking to find exciting internships and careers don’t have to go far.”

The Princeton Review called Mason’s tuition rate a “sweet deal” for Virginia residents. And even for out-of-state students, tuition is relatively economical when compared to similar institutions.

To view the comprehensive list, see the web site.