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Citadel News Service
12 Sep 2012

For second year, The Citadel named top public college in the South

For the second consecutive year The Citadel is ranked No. 1 by U.S. News & World Report in its Best Colleges rankings.

Released today, the rankings put the college at No. 1 among the top public universities in the South. In addition, the School of Engineering has cracked the top 20 nationally, moving up from No. 21 last year to No. 17 this year for best undergraduate engineering programs.

The Citadel is ranked in the regional universities category of colleges because it offers a full range of undergraduate and master's degree (Citadel Graduate College) programs.

In its other rankings, U.S. News ranked The Citadel No. 8 for best value in the South. The best value takes into account a school's academic quality, based on its current U.S. News Best Colleges ranking, and the 2011-12 net cost of attendance for a student who receives the average level of need-based financial aid. The higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal.

Among both public and private universities in the South, The Citadel ranks No. 5. The public and private colleges in the category are ranked by region against their peers because in general they tend to draw students most heavily from surrounding states, according to the rankings.

"U.S. News & World Report confirms what we have known all along—The Citadel is a preeminent institution with excellent academics and a tradition of developing principled leaders," said Citadel President Lt. Gen. John W. Rosa. "We are proud to be No. 1 again, and we are particularly proud of our alumni for their commitment to what we do."

In the regional universities rankings for public and private colleges, The Citadel has the highest rate of alumni giving at 30 percent.

Ron Welch, dean of the School of Engineering, said the U.S. News rankings come on the heels of other recent accolades, including receipt of the Robert Ridgeway Student Chapter Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers for best student chapter in the nation.

"Being No. 17 and in the top 20 in the nation is an incredible honor," Welch said. "It fully recognizes the quality of our students and alumni as well as the faculty that mentor them to become the engineers who significantly impact society. The ability of our students to study hard, to compete hard, and to work hard when they volunteer their time and talents for community service projects develops the type of engineers that the public, and our peer institutions, expect.”

The 2013 Best Colleges guidebook will be on newsstands Sept. 18. The rankings can also be viewed online at

Achieving excellence in the education and development of principled leaders
Media Contact:
Kim Keelor-Parker
(843) 953-2155

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