September 7, 2018

Five Worcester colleges among WSJ top 500 nationally

Courtesy | College of the Holy Cross
The College of the Holy Cross was the top-ranked Worcester school.

Five colleges in Worcester made this week's national ranking of the best colleges by the Wall Street Journal and the Times Higher Education.

The College of the Holy Cross was the top-ranked Worcester school at 91st nationally in a ranking system heavily weighing outcomes for students and resources schools spend on academics. The ranking system factors in student engagement and diversity. The two publications then divide scores for those factors by student costs to gauge how much students receive for how much they spend.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute landed at 98th, and Clark University placed at 278th. MCPHS University, which is based in Boston but has a campus in downtown Worcester, was 282nd. Assumption College was 344th.

Holy Cross and WPI both scored high for student outcomes but Holy Cross scored much lower for student engagement, while WPI was hurt by what the Wall Street Journal and the Times Higher Education said was a poorer environment of diversity. WPI does have a significant portion of foreign students, and it is unclear exactly how the publications reached that conclusion.

Both schools fell slightly in the rankings from 2017 when WPI was 83rd and Holy Cross was 84th. The 2018 rankings were released Thursday.

In all, Massachusetts colleges had a very strong showing on the list, with Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology landing in the top two spots. The state claimed 11 of the top 69 colleges and 33 of the top 500.

Other Massachusetts schools on the list included Amherst College (22nd), Williams College (23rd), Wellesley College (29th), Tufts University (32nd), Boston University (36th), Smith College (41st), Boston College (67th) and Northeastern University (69th).

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