The value of a Stan State education continues to make waves throughout the region, the state and the country as Washington Monthly has ranked the University the No. 1 “Bang for the Buck” four-year college in the West Region.
“This is an important designation and welcome recognition for us,” said Stan State President Ellen Junn. “While all CSU schools are relatively affordable, this ranking shows our dedication to fostering a truly transformative educational experience for our students at Stan State. It also reflects how well we serve our first-generation students, as well as those from underrepresented communities, which is part of our mission to boost our region one graduate at a time.”
Washington Monthly, which starts with a pool of 3,847 four-year colleges, also ranks Stan State No. 4 in the nation for the quality of its master’s programs, and placed the University No. 95 in the nation for the way it serves adult learners.
The magazine ranked Stan State No. 2 in the West last year, and this year placed 12 CSU campuses in its top 30 in the West. It uses a different approach than other magazines to compile its annual college rankings, eschewing the concepts of “rewarding wealth, fame and exclusivity,” while rewarding “smart, well-run colleges that enroll students from all walks of life and help them earn a high-quality diploma at an affordable price, while instilling a sense of service and public obligation and producing groundbreaking research.”
The CSU system was praised by Washington Monthly for graduating Pell and non-Pell students at nearly identical rates. The magazine also lauds universities that admit a high percentage of first-generation students. In the CSU, nearly 60 percent of students are the first in their families to attempt to earn a four-year degree; at Stan State, first-generation students make up nearly three-quarters of the student population.
Stan State’s master’s programs received high marks from the publication for social mobility, research and service. “Regional campuses, which focus more on teaching and draw most of their students from nearby, are the workhorses of the four-year sector, enrolling tens of thousands of students who have jobs, families, homes off campus or all of the above,” the magazine article said. “Students like these, whom the government classifies as ‘nontraditional,’ in fact make up the majority of America’s undergrads.”
Washington Monthly initiated its first “Top 100 schools for adult learners” list in 2016, and this is the second time Stan State has been included. The publication bases these rankings on ease of transfer/enrollment, flexibility of programs, support services, the percent of students 25 or older, graduation rates of part-time students, earnings of adult students ten years after entering college, loan repayment rates and the cost to attend.
Washington Monthly’s rankings marked the third time this month a respected national publication has praised the value of Stan State. Earlier, in its hallmark “Best Colleges for the Money” category, Money magazine moved Stan State into the top 50 for the first time, placing the University at No. 49 overall and No. 31 among public schools. Also, for the 13th consecutive year, Stanislaus State has been selected as one of the country’s top 384 colleges by The Princeton Review.