UVa., W&M in top four in Kiplinger ‘best value’ ranking

virginia-blue-oversizeThe University of Virginia improved to the number two spot in “best value in public colleges” in the annual Kiplinger ranking of the top 100 schools. Other Virginia schools ranked in the top 100 include the College of William and Mary (4), James Madison University (20), Virginia Tech (28), University of Mary Washington (53), George Mason University (56) and Christopher Newport University (87).

The ranking comes after tuition increases at Virginia public colleges and universities had fallen to a decade-low. The drop in tuition increases was made possible by an additional investment of $230 million in the 2012-14 state budget. Prior to moving up in the 2012 rankings, UVa had been ranked #3 for several years.

The University of Virginia and the College of William and Mary were the only schools in Kiplinger’s top 100 values that had 4-year graduation rates above 80 percent, at 87 percent and 85 percent respectively.

“While there is much work left to be done, this Kiplinger ranking reaffirms our efforts to make our world-class public colleges more affordable and accessible to all Virginia students,” Gov. Bob McDonnell said.

The governor has included an additional $31 million in his proposed budget amendments for the upcoming General Assembly session to make college more affordable and support enrollment growth at Virginia schools. Among his proposals, is additional funding in FY2014 for the Tuition Assistance Grant (TAG) program, which provides grants to Virginia students attending Virginia-based private, not-for-profit higher education institutions.

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