Stanislaus State among Princeton Review’s top colleges in academics, student life

The main entry to California State University, Stanislaus, in Turlock features a recycling pond. .
The main entry to California State University, Stanislaus, in Turlock features a recycling pond. . naustin@modbee.com

California State University, Stanislaus, once again takes its place on the Princeton Review’s list of the nation’s best 380 colleges, rounding out a decade on the prestigious register. It also ranks highly on two measures of student comfort and sits on Princeton’s measure of the best colleges in the West.

According to the Princeton Review website, the staff selects colleges “primarily based on our high opinion of their academics.” It collects data on more than 2,000 schools for the lists and rankings it includes in its annual guide to colleges, which it first published in 1992.

“To be among the best for academics is a wonderful reflection of our university – especially our faculty,” President Joseph F. Sheley said. “And to be ranked for 10 consecutive years is a significant achievement.”

(Students) can fit in almost anywhere, as most groups found around campus are very accepting.

Princeton Review notes of student comments

Stanislaus State joins Sonoma State as the only two members of the CSU system on the Top 380 list, which includes seven members of the University of California system.

The listing notes that the Turlock university accepts 73 percent of its applicants and that students who are accepted averaged a 3.26 grade-point average in high school. About 42 percent of students graduate in four years.

“Stanislaus ‘provides affordable education’ that focuses on helping students prepare for their careers with a ‘professional, yet laid-back demeanor,’” the listing says students told them.

22 foreign countries represented among the 7,847 Stanislaus State undergraduates

Unlike Money magazine, which last month named Stanislaus State the nation’s top public value-added university, the Princeton Review does not rank the schools on its main list.

However, it does rank its less formal listings, and Turlock’s own ranked 16th under the category of “Scotch and Soda, Hold the Scotch,” which appeared to be how comfortable it was for students who do not imbibe. Brigham Young University came in first on that list.

Stanislaus State also ranked 14th in “Least Happy Students” category, which seemed to be a measure for students who worry about fitting in. Several notes of how welcoming students found campus groups, and activities for commuter students, accompany the “Campus Life” entry.

Diversity is ‘rich’ here, and there are ‘many different ethnicities and culture from all over.’

Princeton Review notes of student comments

The university’s description by students included room for improvement.

“Though Stanislaus offers ‘scenery as beautiful and varied as the students’ and ‘awesome’ weather, popular complaints are that ‘buildings need updating’ and ‘there are too many geese on the grounds,’” the listing says.

The New York City-based publication also compiles a list of the top schools by region, which pares down the initial roster of more than 2,000 schools to the 649 it splits geographically. Stanislaus State is one of seven CSUs on the “Best Western” list, which includes eight UC schools.

The Princeton Review’s ranking comes on the heels of last week’s Forbes.com national rankings of colleges and universities. Forbes placed Stanislaus State as No. 471 nationally. It also ranked Stanislaus No. 89 among all colleges in the Western region.