Berea College Ranked No. 1 “Best Value College” by The Wall Street Journal/THE


A Berea College student reading the Wall Street Journal's article ranking Berea College Number 1Berea College once again tops the list of “Best Value Colleges” in the nation in The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education (THE) 2021 College Rankings. Berea’s no-tuition model contributed to its No. 1 best-value ranking.

To determine the best value among the top 250 schools WSJ/THE divided each institution’s overall score by its net price, which includes the total cost of attending a school, such as tuition, fees, room and board, books and supplies, minus federal or institutional financial aid that doesn’t have to be repaid. Students who don’t receive any aid aren’t included in the calculation. The College ranked No. 144 overall, climbing from l55 last year.

“We are thrilled to be ranked at the top of the WSJ/THE Best Value list of colleges and universities,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “This cohort of schools is committed to the important American ideal of social mobility through educational opportunity. Our no-tuition policy allows us to provide talented students who might not otherwise be able to afford it, access to a high-quality liberal arts education and transformative experiences and enables them to graduate with little or no debt.  We like to describe this as ‘the best education money can’t buy’!”

To determine overall ranking outcomes, the WSJ/THE survey considers 15 factors across four main categories: Forty percent of each school’s overall score comes from student outcomes such as graduates’ salaries and debt; 30 percent comes from academic resources, including how much the college spends on teaching; 20 percent from student engagement, including how prepared students feel about using their education in the “real” world, and 10 percent from the learning environment, including the diversity of the student body and academic staff.

Berea College is one of only two private schools ranked in the top 10 for best value. Two public schools—Bernard M. Baruch College and City College of New York—were ranked second and third. Both are part of the university system of New York City.

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Tags: Accolade, best-value private colleges, Times Higher Education, Wall Street Journal

Berea College, the first interracial and coeducational college in the South, focuses on learning, labor and service. The College only admits academically promising students with limited financial resources—primarily from Kentucky and Appalachia—but welcomes students from 40 states and 70 countries. Every Berea student receives a Tuition Promise Scholarship, which means no Berea student pays for tuition. Berea is one of nine federally recognized Work Colleges, so students work 10 hours or more weekly to earn money for books, housing and meals. The College’s motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” speaks to its inclusive Christian character.