Wagner College named one of America’s best colleges in new Princeton Review guide

Wagner College was named one of America’s best colleges in the Princeton Review’s new “Best 384 Colleges” guide, which was released today.

Special kudos went to the Wagner College Theatre program, which was ranked Number 5 in the nation.

“The quality of our programs, the dedication of our faculty, and our focus on combining theory and practice make Wagner, year after year, one of America’s best colleges,” said Jeffrey Kraus, Wagner College provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Only about 15 percent of America’s 2,500 four-year colleges are profiled in the “Best 384 Colleges” book, which is the Princeton Review’s flagship college guide. It includes detailed profiles of the colleges with rating scores for all schools in eight categories, based on the Princeton Review’s surveys of students attending the colleges.

In its overall profile on Wagner College, this year’s Princeton Review “Best 384 Colleges” guide quotes extensively from students surveyed for the book. Wagner students describe the college as a “tight-knit and fun, yet academically challenging” liberal arts school. The school is “in the perfect location with a surplus of unique resources” and is composed of “an excellent and vibrant community that supports its students every step of the way.” The “commitment the faculty and staff have for the student body is outstanding.” Students universally agree that Wagner “lets you experience all different types of subjects by following the concept: learning by doing.”

Theater program #5 in America

Wagner College Theatre was ranked #5 among collegiate theater programs in America in the Princeton Review’s “Best Colleges” guide for 2019.

The ranking reflects the survey responses of Wagner College students to the question, “How do you rate your college’s theater productions?”

Wagner came ahead of Drew, Bennington, Northwestern, Muhlenberg, Bard, USC, Sarah Lawrence, Brown, Columbia, and William & Mary, among others.

The WCT has been ranked among the top 5 collegiate theater programs in the United States by the Princeton Review for more than a decade. See the complete list here.

The department, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary, has a long list of distinguished alumni, from Tony Award winner Randy Graff ’76 to the trio of alums currently part of Broadway’s “Dear Evan Hansen.”

“The ranking reflects the ownership our students — not just theater students, but all students at Wagner College — feel over the department and the pride they take in our hard work,” said Felicia Ruff, chairwoman of the Wagner College Theatre department. “We have a lot going for us: excellent faculty, a great location, a history of alumni working in the highest levels of the theater profession and a loyal audience from the local community. But to have the endorsement of the students who identify the Theatre Department as what makes them proud of their college choice — well, that’s a priceless endorsement.”

The Top 20 lists

The Princeton Review tallied the rankings for the Top 20 lists in the new Best Colleges guide based on its surveys of 138,000 students (average 359 per campus) attending the 384 colleges in the book in 2016-17 and/or the previous two school years.

The survey asks students 80 questions about their school’s academics, administration, student body, and themselves. The format uses a five-point Likert scale to convert qualitative student assessments into quantitative data for school-to-school comparisons. You'll find more information on the ranking methodology on the Princeton Review website.