Fiske Guide Once Again Names New College of Florida a ‘Best Buy’ College for 2023

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- by Abby Weingarten

New College was chosen for its “outstanding educational value, as determined by academic quality in relation to the net cost of attendance.” The College has consistently been included in Fiske Guide since its earliest published edition in the 1980s.

“New College is the South’s most liberal institution of higher learning (apologies to Guilford). With a total enrollment of just under 700, New College is about one-third the size of a typical liberal arts college—but has undertaken an aggressive plan to double its enrollment,” Fiske Guide editors said. “The kicker: it’s a public institution and a great bargain.”

For nearly four decades, Fiske has chosen a select group of schools for its annual list, focusing on quality academic offerings and affordable cost. The only other public Florida school on the latest list is the University of Florida.

“We are incredibly proud that New College has continued to be part of this list for so many years,” said New College of Florida President Patricia Okker, Ph.D. “New College is definitely a ‘Best Buy’ College, considering 60 percent of our students graduate debt-free. We offer an exceptional education at an affordable price, and we’re thrilled to be recognized by Fiske.”

Fiske Guide helps prospective students get to know the unique personalities of schools without visiting the campuses. Featuring trademark descriptions, exclusive ratings and up-to-date tips from current students, Fiske Guide is the No. 1 source for discovering more than 320 of the nation’s best colleges and universities.

Founder Edward B. Fiske was an education editor of The New York Times for 17 years, during which time he realized that college-bound students and their families needed better information on which to base their educational choices. He wrote Fiske Guide to help them, and updated it annually with the editorial team.

An excerpt of one of Fiske’s recent descriptions of New College is below:

The mere existence of New College of Florida is proof that it’s possible to find success by marching to your own drummer. This school has done away with grades and GPAs, and the laid-back student body and rigorous academic program “proves to students that learning can be a self-directed, fun, and productive experience.” New College’s campus is adjacent to Sarasota Bay and consists of historic mansions from the former estate of circus magnate Charles Ringling, abutting modern dorms designed by I.M. Pei.

For more information on Fiske Guide, visit

Abby Weingarten is the senior editor in the Office of Communications & Marketing.