Money magazine judges UCI 32nd in nation for best-value education

Rankings based on academic quality, affordability and alumni earnings

Irvine, Calif., July 28, 2014 — UC Irvine ranks 32nd for educational value among the top 665 four-year colleges in the nation in Money magazine’s Best Colleges survey results, announced today. UCI ranks ninth among all public universities and second in a special subcategory called “value added,” which rated each college on the economic and academic profile of its student body and the mix of majors.

“We are proud that Money magazine has recognized UCI not just as ‘one of the world’s most respected research institutions,’ but also as among the very best in providing tremendous value to students,” said interim Chancellor Howard Gillman, Ph.D. “Combining outstanding academics with outstanding value is one of the great challenges facing American higher education, and the fact that we are identified as a national leader is a testament to the great work of our faculty, students, staff, and supporters.”

The magazine praised UCI for its ability to help its diverse undergraduate population thrive. “Although about 40 percent of students come from low-income families,” evaluators said, “86 percent of freshmen go on to graduate – 15 percentage points more than the average for schools with a similar student body.

“And the typical Anteater … earns about $49,000 within five years of graduation, about $9,000 more than alums of comparable colleges.”

To find out which of the nation’s roughly 1,500 four-year colleges offer the most value, Money screened out those with below-average graduation rates and ranked the remaining 665 based on 17 factors in three categories: educational quality, affordability, and alumni earnings provided by PayScale.

In the “value added” category, statisticians looked for colleges whose graduates exceed the averages for their peer groups by the widest margin. The factors considered included the percentage of students who complete college and how much alumni typically earn.

About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is ranked first among U.S. universities under 50 years old by the London-based Times Higher Education and is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Currently under the leadership of interim Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 28,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. Located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities, it’s Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $4.3 billion annually to the local economy.

Media access: UC Irvine maintains an online directory of faculty available as experts to the media at today.uci.edu/resources/experts.php. Radio programs/stations may, for a fee, use an on-campus ISDN line to interview UC Irvine faculty and experts, subject to availability and university approval. For more UC Irvine news, visit news.uci.edu. Additional resources for journalists may be found at communications.uci.edu/for-journalists.

Also: