Kiplinger's names Penn State among Best Values in Public Colleges

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Kiplinger’s Personal Finance named Penn State as one of the 100 Best Values in Public Colleges, recognizing the University among four-year schools that combine outstanding education with economic value.

For 2012-13, the magazine ranked Penn State as No. 48 in the annual listing, released Dec. 27. The ranking reflects schools’ value for in-state students; for 2011-12 Kiplinger’s ranked Penn State No. 51. Kiplinger’s also compiles out-of-state value rankings, with Penn State ranked 31st on that list, an improvement from the 47th spot in 2011-12.

“I’m proud that Penn State continues to offer a quality education at an affordable price,” said President Rodney Erickson. “The University’s improvement in the rankings reflects the dedication of faculty and staff in maintaining Penn State’s high academic reputation, even in the midst of lagging state appropriations. The elevated ranking in value for out-of-state students is particularly pleasing, given that shifting demographics in Pennsylvania include a decline in the population of high school graduates. Our rise in the ranks shows that the University will continue to meet challenges and excel.”

Kiplinger’s assesses quality according to a number of standards, including the admission rate, the percentage of students who return for sophomore year, the student-faculty ratio and the four-year graduation rate. Cost criteria include low sticker prices, abundant financial aid and low average debt at graduation.

Penn State was one of only three Pennsylvania universities to make the list. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ranked No. 1. The University of Virginia and the University of Florida were No. 2 and 3, respectively.

“We applaud this year’s Top 100 schools for their efforts to maintain academic standards while meeting the financial needs of their students,” said Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

The rankings appear in Kiplinger’s February 2013 issue -- on newsstands Jan. 1 -- and online now at www.kiplinger.com/links/college.

Last Updated February 07, 2013