Forbes released their annual list of the top colleges in the nation and Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts topped the list.
The annual “America’s Top Colleges” list ranks the nation’s best schools based on criteria such as retention rates, financial aid, “output” or what a student gets out of earning a degree from a university and other factors. Williams College finished first followed by Stanford University, Swarthmore College, Princeton University and Yale University. Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Pomona College, the US Military Academy and Amherst College rounded out the top 10.
So how did the smaller liberal arts school beat out such powerhouses like Yale and Princeton? The list found older schools like Williams College tended to be more generous with their endowments and financial aid opportunities to make college more affordable for students who need help paying their tuition and housing costs. The top 10 schools also had higher retention rates among their student body because students expressed a great deal of satisfaction about going to school. The lowest student satisfaction and school efficacy rating among the top 10 schools on the list was an astonishing 95 percent. We’re not sure most college campuses have 95 people on campus who are satisfied with their school.
So there’s really no big secret to running a successful college. All you need to do is make sure that your students have enough money to attend and keep them happy while they are there by making sure they complete their studies. It’s amazing how simple and dumb the solution sounds when you spell out it out that way.