Magazine puts college near top of value list

Geneseo, once again, has landed spots near the top of the college rankings.

In the Jan. 10 issue of Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine, Geneseo was ranked the No. 1 best-value public college for out-of-state students in the nation and sixth best-value public college for in-state students.

Geneseo beat out top-notch schools such as the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of California at Berkley and Texas A&M University to achieve the ranking.

The list also featured a number of other SUNY institutions, including Binghamton in second place for out-of-state students and eighth place for in-state residents

"There's no reason why the state of New York shouldn't offer its residents the same education that would cost $45,000 to $50,000 at a private school," President Christopher Dahl said in the Kiplinger's article. "It's elitist to argue that state residents shouldn't have access to an outstanding education at a reasonable price."

Geneseo was chosen over other colleges based upon a number of different criteria, including academic quality, cost, and financial aid. The data collected was provided to Kiplinger by Peterson's, an education-resource company.

Factors that were considered included the percentage of the 2006-2007 class scoring above a 600 on the math and verbal sections of the SAT, admission rates, freshman-retention rates, student-faculty ratios, four- and six-year graduation rates, average costs with and without grants and aid, and average student debt after graduation.

The combination of a low out-of-state tuition and high graduation rates was the formula for Geneseo's success, according to Dr. William Caren, associate vice president for enrollment management.

Geneseo is attracting more out-of-state students. Caren explained that the Kiplinger report will be included with admissions packets and sent to select out-of-state high schools.

As more students are drawn to the school's growing academic reputation and low tuition, it isn't surprising that Geneseo is also gradually becoming more selective.

"We are funded by the state for the equivalent of 5,100 students and we try to hit that mark as close as possible," said Caren.