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Stanislaus: One of the best in the West
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For the 15th year in a row, California State University, Stanislaus has been recognized among the nation’s best colleges by U.S. News and World Report magazine.

“This consistent success shows CSU Stanislaus is committed to its students and academic excellence. Faculty and staff’s dedication and perseverance, even in difficult economic times, is evident,” CSU Stanislaus President Hamid Shirvani said.

CSU Stanislaus ranked 48th among 84 public and private universities in the Regional Universities – West category, slightly down from a 45th place finish in last year’s rankings. The university claimed 16th among public universities in the region, same as a year before.

CSU Stanislaus finished in the top tier in the Regional Universities – West category, which includes only schools that specialize in undergrad and master’s programs, with few doctoral programs, physically located in the Western United States.

Trinity University of San Antonio, Texas, was the top school in the category with a perfect score of 100, while second-place Santa Clara University was the highest ranking California school, with 93 points. California Polytechnic State University – San Luis Obispo was the highest finishing CSU, at sixth with a score of 74. CSU Stanislaus tallied 36 points for its 48th place ranking.

U.S. News and World Report calculates its rankings based on undergraduate academic reputation, graduation and freshman retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving rate.

U.S. News and World Report highlighted CSU Stanislaus for an outstanding freshman retention rate of 81.8 percent, among the best in the region. The university was also recognized as being among the most racially and economically diverse Regional Universities in the West, with 47 percent of students receiving Pell Grants.

Earlier this month, CSU Stanislaus was named among the Best 373 Colleges in the nation by the Princeton Review for the fifth straight year. The Princeton Review does not directly rank the colleges which makes its list, however.

The U.S. News and World Report 2011 Best Colleges top finisher in the National University rankings was Harvard University of Cambridge, Mass. Stanford University was the highest finishing California school, at fifth overall, while the University of California, Berkeley, was the top UC campus at 22nd. UC Los Angeles was just three spots behind, at 25th, while UC San Diego, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, and UC Irvine were also ranked among the top 50 National Universities. UC Merced, having opened its doors just six years ago, was not ranked.

Williams College of Williamstown, Mass., was the highest ranking National Liberal Arts school. Pomona College of Claremont was the highest finishing California school, at sixth.

The U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges 2011 guidebook will be on newsstands Tuesday. The list is already available online at

To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2005.