When Forbes publishes its list of “America’s Top Colleges,” people everywhere scramble to find their alma-mater, current school, or prospective college. These rankings take into consideration factors such as student satisfaction, post-graduate success, student debt, and graduation rate.
It is expected that the prestigious Ivy League Colleges would dominate the top of this list, as they are presumably home to the smartest students and the most money. However, it’s no surprise to us that in the top 20 schools, there are more small Liberal Arts Colleges than Ivy League institutions. The composition of these first 20 looks something like this: eight Liberal Arts schools, seven Ivy Leagues, four large research universities, and the U.S. Military Academy. A notable turnout for the relatively unknown Liberal Arts Colleges.
Rated at the top spot is Williams College, a small private Liberal Arts school located in rural Massachusetts. Williams made a huge jump to the top of the list after being ranked at number nine in 2013. Swarthmore College follows closely, at the third highest position, before any Ivy League school. With these rankings, Forbes has further confirmed the immense value of a Liberal Arts education, which includes many one-on-one interactions with professors, personalized education, and acquisition of a widespread skill set, highly coveted by employers. Pomona College and Amherst College also make the top 10 on this Forbes list.
Top 20 Colleges Ranking by Forbes.com
Princeton University is the highest ranked Ivy League college, at the number four position. Impressive, but expected. Yale comes in at number six, followed by Harvard in seventh place. This is actually an improvement for Harvard, which was ranked eighth in 2013. However, both Princeton and Yale were overtaken by Swarthmore College on the most recent list. For more on this topic, we compiled statistics and student commentary to do an in-depth analysis of the value of a Liberal Arts versus Ivy League education. The results might surprise you.
With reputable publications quantifying the value of education, and employer surveys highlighting the skills preferred when hiring new college grads, prospective students and parents can no longer ignore the importance of a Liberal Arts education.