A Different Kind of Ranking

Before I begin, I would like to apologize to Joe Torre on behalf of many Yankee fans for the complete disrespect the organization has shown him for the past couple of years.

Now that this is off my chest…

In their most recent issue, the Washington Monthly magazine published a ranking of the top colleges in America. This list, however, was constructed differently than US News and World Report’s rankings (Cornell 12, tied with Washington University). Instead of the typical SAT scores, alumni giving, endowment, etc. that US News measures, Washington Monthly took 3 main factors into consideration. They ranked colleges based on how easily does the college facilitate social mobility and socioeconomic gain amongst students (aka in politically incorrect terms, accepting lower class students and being a gateway to prosperity for those students), the amount and quality of research a college performs that will improve the American economy and society, and how well the college instills a sense of community service amongst its student body.

These are drastically different categories compared to those measured by US News, so you can imagine that colleges would be ranked quite differently, which is true. Texas A&M was number one, UCLA number two, and the only Ivy League University ranked in the top 10 was Cornell at seven. The next closest was Harvard at 27. While only so much can be taken from rankings whether these, the Wall Street Journal, or US News, it’s still interesting and nice to see that the University I go to accomplishes what an institution of higher learning is supposed to.