Officials at the University of Maine at Presque Isle are pleased to announce that the institution earned not one, but three top rankings on U.S. News and World Report's 2014 Best Colleges list. In this year's annual rankings, UMPI was named among the 50 Best Regional Colleges in the North, among the 15 Top Public Schools in the North, and among the top 5 Regional Colleges in the North for graduates with least debt.
"We are delighted to have U.S. News and World Report recognize us in this year's Best Colleges List, not only for the quality education we provide to our students, but also for the ways we work—through financial aid and low tuition and fees—to ensure our students leave here with the least amount of debt possible," UMPI President Linda Schott said. "And while appearing on just one list is an honor, earning high marks in three categories is a major distinction that we are proud and humbled to receive."
In its Best Regional Colleges in the North ranking, UMPI was listed as #41, earning it first tier status. The ranking defines regional colleges as schools that focus on undergraduate education but grant fewer than half their degrees in liberal arts disciplines. The north region includes Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.
UMPI was listed as #13 in the Top Public Schools ranking list for Regional Colleges in the North. The ranking defines public colleges and universities as those that are typically operated under the supervision of state governments and funded, in part, by tax dollars and subsidies from the state. Such universities often offer free or discounted tuition to students considered residents of the state.
In its third ranking, the University was short-listed among Regional Colleges in the North for graduates with the least debt. U.S. News compiled a list of schools whose Class of 2012 graduated with the lightest debt load. The data included loans taken out by students from their colleges, from private financial institutions, and from federal, state, and local governments. Coming in at #5 after Keystone College (PA), Cooper Union (NY), Paul Smith's College (NY), and Fisher College (MA), UMPI was the only Maine institution and the only public college among the 11 states in the North region that made the list.
U.S. News and World Report has published its Best Colleges rankings since 1983. According to its website, the rankings provide an excellent starting point for families searching for the best academic value for their money and allow them to compare, at a glance, the relative quality of institutions based on such widely accepted indicators of excellence as freshman retention and graduation rates and the strength of the faculty.