DALLAS TWP – Misericordia University was named to MONEY Magazine’s 2018-19 Best Colleges list, the second highest ranked college or university in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties.
Misericordia earned a ranking of 268 out of the 727 schools listed, climbing 215 places on the list since 2015. Among the factors that earned the university recognition include an estimated price for 2018-19 of $48,600 without aid and of $29,000 with average aid; 100 percent of students with need get financial aid; a 74-percent acceptance rate; average tests scores of 1050 for SAT and 24 for ACT, and an average annual salary for graduates of $45,000 within three years of graduation – a figure that increased from $40,600 in 2015.
The ranking is in its fifth year and is designed to help parents and students determine which of the country’s four-year colleges and universities provide “educational quality, affordability and alumni success,” according to MONEY Magazine.
After first screening out schools with graduation rates below the median, those facing financial difficulties, and those with fewer than 500 undergraduates, MONEY also screened out military academies that require a commitment of service in exchange for free tuition. The remaining 727 U.S. colleges were ranked on 26 factors in three categories: educational quality – including six-year graduation rate; affordability – including net price of a degree and student debt upon graduation, and outcomes (alumni success) – including early career earnings within three years of graduation, mid-career earnings and earnings adjusted by majors based on reports from PayScale.com.
MONEY also measured comparative value by assessing how well students at each school did versus what would be expected for students with similar economic and academic backgrounds, and the college’s mix of majors. Additional factors considered in the ranking were merit aid, parent and student borrowing, and loan repayment, according to MONEY Magazine.
New this year, MONEY introduced two metrics from federal Department of Education data — regarding graduation rates for Pell Grant recipients and the share of transfer students who earn a degree. Both data points helped provide a more complete analysis of a college’s graduation rate. A statistical technique was then used to turn all the data points into a single score and the schools were ranked based on those scores, according to the publication.
Misericordia students acknowledged the university’s highly respected programs in the health sciences, including medical imaging, sonography, nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech-language pathology, and solid offerings in business and teacher education. Undergraduates, according to The Princeton Review, are grateful that professors “really seem like they genuinely care about their students.” They also truly appreciate that professors “have (a lot of) experience in their field and bring so much outside information into the classroom that you really get a feel for what it will be like when you are working.”