WILSON, N.C. — Barton has once again been named among the 2016 Best Colleges in the Southeast by The Princeton Review in their web site listing of 2016 Best Colleges: Region by Region. Barton also held its top tier listing in the U.S. News & World Report 2016 Best Regional Colleges in the South, moving up three positions this year to #22. Barton’s rise in rank to #22 (tied with Blue Mountain College in Mississippi) is even more impressive when it’s compared to Barton’s 2011 top-tier Best Regional Colleges in the South ranking at #42, a 20-position jump in just five years.
The “2016 Best Colleges: Region by Region” identifies schools that Princeton Review recommends (though does not rank) as “regional bests” across four locales: the Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, and West. The 140 colleges that The Princeton Review chose for its “Best in the Southeast” designations are located in 12 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. The Princeton Review also designated 225 colleges in the Northeast, 125 in the West, and 159 in the Midwest as best in the company’s “2016 Best Colleges: Region by Region” lists. Collectively, the 649 colleges named “regional best(s)” constitute about 25% of the nation’s four-year colleges. The Princeton Review notes that from the hundreds of institutions they considered in each region, they selected these schools primarily for their excellent academics. They also weighed what students attending the schools reported to Princeton Review about their campus experiences on the student survey for this project.
The Princeton Review web site posted several comments reflecting Barton students’ survey responses, including, “Barton students describe their college as “a ‘small’ school with a lot of heart. From the moment you step onto the campus, the ‘family-like atmosphere’ becomes palpable. And undergrads quickly boast that ‘intimate class sizes’ and ‘close relationships with professors’ are a staple of life here. The college also has plenty of non-traditional students and many are grateful to discover peers in their own ‘age group.’ Moreover, flexible class schedules make it relatively easy for undergrads to balance both work and family obligations.”
Princeton Review also reported, “Academically, [Barton] students brag about the ‘great’ nursing program as well as stellar education and social work departments. Across the board, students happily describe their professors as ‘awesome.’ Indeed, they ‘take the time to get to know each of their students and they make themselves very accessible.’ Importantly, they also have a knack for ‘bringing real world…experiences [into] the classroom.’ Further, Barton ‘professors are excellent at presenting the information in a way you can understand, and most have an open door policy that allows students to just walk right in their office for help whenever the door is open.’ Undergrads also truly appreciate the fact their teachers ‘are very accommodating [when it comes] to individual students’ situations.’ Finally, as one highly content junior sums up, ‘My school is all about helping their students find their passion, achieve their goals, and making their dreams a reality.’”
U.S. News & World Report rankings are split into four regions: North, South, Midwest, and West. Those schools designated as “regional colleges” focus on undergraduate education but grant fewer than half their degrees in liberal arts disciplines.