Posts Tagged ‘College Rankings’

My first blog post “Chancy Nancy vs. U.S. News” was a condemnation of U.S. News & World Report’s College Rankings. My position was that U.S. News’s rankings system is flawed and that no college should try and sell its institution to a magazine. Last week, an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education titled “Syracuse’s Slide” referenced Syracuse University’s decline in the national rankings. The article also described Chancellor Nancy Cantor’s increased financial commitment to the city of Syracuse, academics and research, and student diversity and selectivity. The article highlighted some of the controversies surrounding Chancy Nancy’s tenure here as well as criticism and praise from the school’s faculty.

One student here at SU posted the article on Facebook and, as a result, it garnered many responses from SU students. The students expressed how they felt about SU’s ranking and status as well as the initiatives by Chancy Nancy to increase the university’s role in the community and diversity at SU. While there were a variety of opinions concerning all of these issues, SU students did not disregard each other’s viewpoints, but rather expressed their sentiments in a mature and civil manner.

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Not every student came to Syracuse University simply for the frats and sororities or to watch our football team flounder and basketball team continuously tease us. Many of us decided to come here for some other trivial reason: the academic programs offered here at SU.

Although our school is far from perfect, we don’t deserve the ranking the U.S. News & World Report has given us on its annual list of best colleges. Last year our school was ranked the 55th best college in the nation, but just one year later we have dropped seven spots to 62nd best. What a difference a year makes.

But wait, our overall score increased by three points. Looks like I’m not the only one who finds these rankings both absurd and confusing. SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor, in response to our school’s drop in rank, questioned the validity of the magazine’s findings and argued that the publication is only out to sell magazines. Kudos, Chancy Nancy!

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