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Best in the Midwest

Barry McNamara
Monmouth College is among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest, according to The Princeton Review.

The New York City-based education services company selected Monmouth as one of 152 higher education institutions it considers “Best in the Midwest” in its “2011 Best Colleges: Region by Region” survey.

The Midwest colleges are located in 12 states: Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. The company also designated colleges in the Northeast, West and Southeast as best in their locales. Overall, the 623 colleges named “regional bests” represent only about 25 percent of the nation’s 2,500 four-year colleges.

Commentary by Monmouth students on The Princeton Review website describes MC as a school that offers a wide variety of extracurricular opportunities. “I am involved in at least seven,” wrote one. “It’s very easy to get involved, which I love.”

One student noted that Monmouth offers “hands-on experience in scientific research” and “takes time to locate jobs” for graduates. Offered another, “You can interact with your professors a lot easier than in a larger school.” The college’s “brick-themed” campus was called “charming,” and its athletic facilities “superb.”

The Princeton Review’s selections were based on institutional data collected from several hundred schools in each region, visits to schools over the years and the opinions of independent and high school-based college advisers.

“We’re pleased to recommend Monmouth College to users of our site as one of the best schools to earn their undergraduate degree,” said Robert Franek, Princeton Review’s senior vice president of publishing. “We chose it and the other terrific institutions we name as ‘regional best’ colleges mainly for their excellent academic programs. We also take into account what students at the schools reported to us about their campus experiences on our 80-question student survey for this project.

The Princeton Review ranked the colleges with numerical scores on a scale of 60 to 99, based on institutional data provided by the colleges and student surveys. Monmouth’s highest ratings came in the areas of quality of life, financial aid and academics. Ratings can be viewed at

“Monmouth College offers a first-rate experience both in and outside the classroom,” said Jacquelyn Condon, Monmouth College’s vice president for student life and dean of students. “The breadth and depth of the intellectual and personal experiences on our campus make it easy to understand our ‘Best in the Midwest’ ranking.”

The Princeton Review specializes in test preparation courses and books and college admission services. It is not affiliated with Princeton University.