BROWNSVILLE — The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley has been ranked one of the best colleges in Texas.
UTRGV is ranked 13th on the annual list of the Top 25 Best Colleges in Texas by BestColleges.com, a leading provider of information about higher education.
The Valley university is ranked third among University of Texas system schools, behind No. 2 UT-Austin and No. 4 UT-Dallas. Rice University in Houston ranked first on the list.
Patricia McHatton, UTRGV interim provost, said two factors likely contributed to the ranking. UTRGV has an 80 percent first-year retention rate, and has the second-lowest tuition and fees in the UT System and third-lowest among all Texas public universities.
“Another thing is the growth in accelerated online graduate programs,” she said, noting UTRGV’s accelerated online master’s of education in educational leadership degree recently was named the best value nationally for an accelerated master’s program. Students can earn this degree completely online in as little as 10 months, she said.
McHatton also said accolades such as the BestColleges.com ranking make a difference for the university.
“Students have become very savvy in doing their due diligence and in identifying the best programs when choosing what school to attend,” she said.
The rankings are based on the most recent data available from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and College Navigator, both of which are hosted by the National Center for Education Statistics, BestColleges.com said on its website.
“Our goal is to objectively assess relative quality based on academic outcomes, affordability, and the breadth and depth of online learning opportunities,” BestColleges.com says on the website.
“The Best Colleges in Texas rankings aim to highlight higher education institutions in the state that are committed to excellent academic education and affordable, meaningful learning opportunities for students,” said Stephanie Snider, general manager of BestColleges.com.
“The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley stands out as one of the best colleges in the state due to its offering of 118 undergraduate and graduate degrees, the new medical school, internationally recognized faculty, and recognition as one of the top Hispanic-serving institutions in the country,” she said.
The success of UTRGV students is a core priority for the university that drives decisions about pivotal factors like degree choices and faculty, UTRGV President Guy Bailey said.
“The Rio Grande Valley community is important to us, and our goal is to graduate students and help ensure that they become valuable contributors to the prosperity of the region,” Bailey said. “We are committed to making sure they have good choices and many options for building their futures.”
BestColleges.com says its goal is to objectively assess relative quality based on academic outcomes, affordability, and the breadth and depth of online learning opportunities.
1. Rice University
2. University of Texas
3. Texas A&M University
– College Station
4. UT at Dallas
5. Trinity University
6. Texas Tech University
7. LeTourneau University
8. University of
9. Texas State University
10. Texas Christian
11. Southern Methodist
12. University of Houston
13. UT RIO GRANDE
14. Midwestern State University
15. Texas A&M – Texarkana
16. Southwestern University
17. Austin College
18. University of St. Thomas
19. Baylor University
20. Dallas Baptist University
21. University of Houston –
22. UT Arlington
23. Sam Houston State University
24. Texas Lutheran University
25. Texas Woman’s University