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Troy ranked top in colleges

Troy University has been named among the top in southeastern colleges by those who matter most to the institution’s leaders — the students.

The Princeton Review ranked Troy among the best southeastern colleges in the United States, an honor the school has received for the sixth year in a row.

It is also one based on student reviews of the institution.

“The ranking reflects what the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools found this spring,” said John Schmidt, senior vice chancellor of Advancement and External Relations. “When they visited in the spring, they themselves noted Troy has a ‘culture of caring.’”

Schmidt was referring to the accrediting institution for the university, which gave Troy its approval for SACS accreditation in the last year.

“I think this is another affirmation we do care about our students,” Schmidt said.

Barbara Patterson, director of Student Involvement, said surveys are sent to the university each year by Princeton Review and those are then distrusted to students for submission.

Topics of the survey include academics and administration, life at the school, fellow students and themselves.

The list includes only 623 colleges and universities nationwide and 133 in the southeast, which spans across 12 states.

“We care about safety and security on campus. We stress competence in the classroom. We do care about students on all levels,” Schmidt said. “This is another external validation of what we’re trying to do at the university. It makes us more competitive and enhances the quality, too.”

Schmidt said having review by those who attend the university is especially beneficial to the school on many levels.

“The peer review and peer validation is very important to the life of a university,” Schmidt said.

“When parents, alumni and those who don’t know anything about the university begin to see this, it is an indicator (of the type of institution Troy is).”

The 133 colleges The Princeton Review chose for its ‘Best in the Southeast’ designations are located in 12 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.   The Princeton Review also designated 218 colleges in the Northeast, 120 in the West, and 152 in the Midwest as best in their locales on the company’s 2010 Best Colleges: Region by Region section on its site.  The 640 colleges named ‘regional best’ represent only about 25 percent of the nations 2,500 four-year colleges, the Troy University Media Relations office reports.