Rankings continue to improve

Tech recorded another strong showing in the 2011 U.S. News and World Report rankings for America’s Best Colleges, which were released Tuesday, Aug. 17. The Institute tied for the No. 4 ranking for engineering programs at schools that offer doctoral degrees with the California Institute of Technology. Tech also tied with the University of California-San Diego for No. 7 among all public universities in the nation.

“The fact that Tech has sustained a top 10 ranking in U.S. News and World Report for more than a decade helps to give visibility to the Institute and our tradition of excellence,” said Institute President G.P. “Bud” Peterson.

Tech earned recognition in a variety of more specific categories, including high rankings for individual schools and academic programs. Seven of the Institute’s engineering schools ranked in the top five for their respective disciplines. Leading the way were the School of Industrial Engineering (No. 1 overall) and the School of Aerospace Engineering (No. 2). The Schools of Mechanical, Biomedical and Civil Engineering each earned a No. 3 ranking, while the Electrical and Environmental Engineering programs came in at No. 5.

Notably, some of Tech’s individual programs saw improvement from last year’s marks. The School of Mechanical Engineering rose one spot after coming in at No. 4 in the 2010 rankings, and the College of Management continued its steady rise; one year after jumping from No. 35 to No. 31, it rose three more spots to No. 28 in the national rankings.

Aside from individual schools of study, the Institute was acknowledged for excellence in four categories of general academic programs: internship/co-op opportunities, undergraduate research, study abroad programs and senior capstone projects.

“From a recruiting standpoint, potential students, faculty and staff who are considering a top ranked university environment look further and find out about all the opportunities available through various programs,” Peterson said.

A new feature of the report this year included a survey of high school counselors to determine which university they thought offered the best education. Tech tied with several other universities for No. 22 overall, including public institutions such as the University of Michigan and the University of North Carolina and private universities such as Rice University, Emory University and the University of Southern California. Only one public school (the University of California-Berkeley) was ranked higher in the poll.

The successful showing follows a similarly strong performance by Tech’s College of Engineering in the publication’s April release of its graduate school rankings. The Institute placed in the top 10 for nine engineering fields, including a No. 1 ranking in Industrial Engineering and a No. 2 ranking for Biomedical Engineering. Three other graduate programs—Aerospace Engineering, Civil Engineering and Environmental Engineering—placed in top five of their respective categories.