Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Westfield State remains steady in national college rankings

Westfield State University is one of Massachusetts’* top public universities in the region according to the U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Colleges 2016” ranking list. Distinguishing the university is its graduation rate of 63 percent.

“There is always more to be done. We are focusing efforts on a wide range of student support initiatives, including an enhanced First-Year Forward program to help students transition to college; on expanding opportunities for community service and engagement, undergraduate research, and internships; and on creating a variety of new alumni programs to improve our engagement with graduates.”

Westfield State officially ranked 116 in the top tier of the "Best Regional Universities – North.” The overall rankings of regional universities, which offer an array of undergraduate and graduate degrees but few doctoral programs, are split amongst four quadrants of the country - North, South, Midwest, and West, respectively.  Only the top tier of each category is ranked. The 618 universities in this category are not ranked nationally but rather against their peer group in one of four geographic regions because, in general, they tend to draw students most heavily from surrounding states. Westfield State has steadily climbed in the annual college rankings, notably jumping a full tier in 2009.

Rankings were determined by a number of factors including assessment of excellence, retention and graduation rates, graduation rate performance, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving. New this year, peer assessment was not a factor in scoring educational institutions.

In January, Westfield State was named in the top 30 percent of U.S. News & World Report 2015 “Best Online Education Programs” list, and was ranked 58out of 214 in the Online Education Bachelor’s Program category.  Westfield State has offered online classes since 2002 and currently offers six online bachelor’s degree completion programs in business management, criminal justice, liberal studies, history, sociology, and psychology. Last year, Westfield State signed the MassTransfer Plus agreement that allows students who have completed an online associate’s degree at Holyoke Community College (HCC) to transfer to the university’s online bachelor’s degree program, making it possible for them to complete a four-year degree fully online.

Additionally, Westfield State University led the state university system in the U.S. and World Report’s “2015 Best Online Programs for Veterans” in May, ranking 52 out of 183. Westfield State offers a number of services to veteran students including free technology training tutorials, and free online training. Westfield State currently has 124 veterans, 86 Guard members, and 45 students who are family members of veterans and receiving military benefits.

The exclusive rankings are available at www.usnews.com/colleges and through the U.S. News College Compass, which can be purchased at the U.S. News & World Report online store.

They will also be published in U.S. News & World Report's 2016 edition of "Best Colleges," available on newsstands today.

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