The University of Virginia’s College at Wise is ranked as a top liberal arts college by Washington Monthly. UVA Wise ranked also at 33 in the category of Most Bang for the Buck.

Four-year colleges and universities are ranked based on the institution’s contribution to the public good in the categories of social mobility, research and public service. The Best Bang for the Buck ranking is based on colleges and universities ability to help non-wealthy students earn marketable degrees at affordable rates.

UVA Wise leaders said the Washington Monthly rankings show the College’s commitment to making higher education affordable so students are not crippled by student debt once they graduate and begin careers or seek graduate degrees.

“Being recognized as a nationally ranked liberal arts college is a tremendous honor for UVA Wise and validation of the hard work and dedication that occurs on a daily basis between students, faculty, and staff,” Chris Dearth, vice chancellor for enrollment management said. “Our low net tuition price of just below $10,000 per year confirms our commitment to our students and  is well below our peer institutions and regional competitors.”

Dearth, who is in his first year as head of admissions and recruiting at UVA Wise is particularly buoyed by the strong showing in the category of Best Bang for the Buck in the southeast. Washington Monthly pointed out that non-wealthy students are able to earn a marketable degree at affordable prices.

“Our outstanding ranking is proof that our commitment to families in the region and throughout Virginia is working,” Dearth said. “We work very closely with families to ensure that a UVA Wise education is financially within reach.”

Dearth said the rankings show that alumni have seen an increase in their lifetime earnings, and they have little or often no student loan debt.

“Our alumni go on and do great things for their city, region and state,” Dearth said.

UVA Wise is also able to offer in-state tuition rates to students who live in the 13-state Appalachian Regional Commission, a large strip of land that goes from a portion of New York to Mississippi. Dearth and his team plan to strengthen recruiting efforts in those regions as well as continue to serve the rest of Virginia and surrounding states.

Photo of Chris Dearth