Published September 8, 2014
Top-notch academics and the lowest possible debt: That’s the win-win value offered to students by the University at Buffalo, according U.S. News and World Report. The magazine today released its popular annual ranking of the best colleges and universities in America for undergraduate students.
This year, UB for the first time cracked the top 50 among the best public “national universities” in the country – ranking No. 48, up three spots from last year’s No. 51 ranking. U.S. News bases its rankings on an assessment of 1,400 of the country’s four-year colleges and universities.
Among both public and private national universities, UB is ranked No. 103, up 6 spots from last year and an improvement of 17 spots over the past 5 years.
And UB continues to outperform its peers on value. UB is ranked No. 1 among public colleges and universities nationwide for graduating students with the least amount of debt. Among both public and private schools, UB is ranked No. 8 for the least debt.
“As a major public research university, UB delivers an exceptional education by providing students with opportunities to learn from top scholars and participate in stimulating research projects and cultural activities,” said UB Provost and Executive Vice President Charles F. Zukoski. “We are committed to offering excellent and distinctive educational programs, while also improving graduation rates and keeping student and family debt low.”
According to U.S. News, for those UB students who graduate with debt (55 percent of students don’t have any debt upon graduation), the average debt amount is $17,455. At national universities with the “most debt,” students graduate with average debt of $35, 902 to $41,060, according to U.S. News, and as many as 87 percent of students graduate in debt.
Also earning a top ranking with U.S. News was UB's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, ranked No. 65 among the nation's best undergraduate engineering programs at schools whose highest degree is a doctorate. UB's School of Management is again ranked as one of the best undergraduate business programs with a ranking of No. 79, an improvement of seven spots, out of more than 700 accredited schools, higher than any other business school in the State University of New York system.
UB was ranked one of the best colleges for veterans, at No. 23. This category, introduced last year by U.S. News, lists top-ranked schools that participate in federal initiatives to help veterans and active service members apply, pay for and complete their degrees.
Over the past few years, UB has made significant investments in its academic programming and facilities, adding new course sections and new “Undergraduate Academies” in Entrepreneurship, Sustainability and Global Perspectives to connect communities of students with similar interests and provide them with access to faculty expertise and real-world learning experiences.
New residence halls, academic buildings and dining halls also enhance the UB undergraduate experience. A new “Finish in 4” program pledges to provide entering UB freshmen with the academic resources they need to graduate in four years, thereby keeping student debt low and improving the university’s graduation rate.
To aid its student veterans, UB last fall opened a new Veteran Services Office to celebrate the accomplishments of student veterans and provide access to the services they need to help them succeed.
“Again this year, we are proud to see so many of our SUNY campuses recognized as being among the best nationally by U.S. News and World Report,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “In every community across New York State, SUNY colleges and universities like UB offer students top quality degree programs and applied learning opportunities that prepare them for success in today’s 21st-century global economy. Congratulations to each of the SUNY campuses making the list for 2015.”