New College Holds Top Five U.S. News Ranking Among Public Liberal Arts Colleges in Nation

(August 17, 2007) – In only its third year of being ranked, New College of Florida has maintained its place among the nation’s top five public, liberal arts colleges in U.S.News & World Report’s annual survey of America’s Best Colleges.New College, the state’s honors college for liberal arts and sciences located in Sarasota, has placed in the top five – at No. 3, No. 1 and, this year, No. 4 – each year since gaining its independence and becoming eligible for inclusion in the U.S. News rankings.
Last year, in the America’s Best Colleges 2007, New College was the No. 1 ranked public, liberal arts college in a tie with the state-supported Virginia Military Institute.
Jumping ahead of New College and VMI in America’s Best Colleges 2008 are two national military academies – Annapolis and West Point – that both appeared in different categories in past years. Recently reclassified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the U.S. Naval Academy and U.S. Military Academy were included in the “best liberal arts colleges” category in this year’s edition of the newsmagazine’s college guidebook. Both are federally funded and ranked Nos. 1 and 3 for financial resources and also ranked one and two for having the lowest acceptance rates among all liberal arts colleges.
The top five public, liberal arts colleges for 2008 as ranked by U.S. News are:
1. U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md.
2. U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.
3. Virginia Military Institute
4. New College of Florida
4. St. Mary’s College of Maryland
“New College’s continued placement in the top five nationally in the annual U.S. News survey recognizes the consistency of the outstanding programs we offer and the high quality of our faculty and our students,” said New College President Mike Michalson. “To be now in the good company of the two service academies, both of which offer exceptional educations, is an honor.”
Overall, among all liberal arts colleges, public and private, New College tied for 87th with four other colleges: St. Mary’s College of Maryland, and two private schools, Millsaps College in Mississippi and Transylvania University in Kentucky. Last year, New College was No. 86 overall.
New College is the only liberal arts college, public or private, in Florida ranked in the top two tiers of the category.
Williams College in Massachusetts was the No. 1 liberal arts college overall. Among the top public schools, the Naval Academy ranked 20th, the U.S. Military Academy tied for 22nd and VMI was 71st.
The 2008 survey ranks 266 liberal arts colleges, which are schools that emphasize undergraduate education and award at least half of degrees in the arts and sciences.
Highlights of the college rankings will be published in the Aug. 27 issue of U.S.News & World Report, which will be available at newsstands Aug. 20 when the guidebook also will go on sale.