2012 Princeton Review Gives MHC High Marks

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According to a survey by The Princeton Review, Mount Holyoke continues to offer one of the best undergraduate classroom experiences in the country on one of the most beautiful campuses.

The Princeton Review Guide’s annual guidebook, The Best 376 Colleges: 2012 Edition, published August 2, asked 122,000 students at 376 top colleges to rate their schools on dozens of topics and report on their campus experiences. The publication then reports the top 20 ranking colleges in 62 categories.

Mount Holyoke ranked seventh in the category of "best classroom experience" and fourth on the list of most beautiful campuses in the 2012 guidebook. The College has placed prominently on both lists for several years; last year it was ranked first for “best classroom experience” and seventh for campus beauty. MHC was highly rated in several other categories this year as well, including “Students Study the Most” (#18), “LGBT-Friendly” (#19), and “Dorms Like Palaces” (#17).

In addition to the rankings, the individual college profiles featured in the guidebook include school ratings with numerical scores on a scale of 60 to 99, based largely on school-reported data collected during the 2010-2011 academic year. Mount Holyoke earned ratings of 98 in academics, 96 in financial aid, 95 in admissions selectivity, and 91 in quality of life.

“I am thrilled that Mount Holyoke has been recognized, once again, for our exceptional classroom experience, for the physical beauty of our campus, for our commitment to academic excellence and our strengths in promoting a diverse and inclusive community,” said MHC President Lynn Pasquerella. “I am so very proud of the faculty, staff, and students who contribute on a daily basis to the creation of this extraordinary learning environment.”

In its profile on Mount Holyoke, The Princeton Review Guide quotes extensively from students surveyed for the book. Students reported MHC is “an amazing school with a strong history of producing remarkable and intelligent young women who go on to achieve great things,” and they praised its “supportive all-women environment,” its “academic rigor,” and its “brilliant alumnae.”

One history major said, “Mount Holyoke provides an incredible academic experience with outstanding faculty (and) engaged classmates.” Students described professors as “incredibly motivated and interesting.” Reported one respondent, “Mount Holyoke professors are brilliant, but human and accessible.” Students also praised the College’s Alumnae Association, crediting its staff with doing “a wonderful job at helping current students connect (with alumnae) in terms of careers, internships, or just common interest.”

MHC students described themselves and their classmates as “happy, intelligent women dedicated to making a real difference in the world” and said typical students are “poised, eloquent, passionate, and doing interesting things both inside and outside the classroom.”

“(This) is a wonderful, inviting and challenging environment,” where “smart, passionate, diverse women come together…in a beautiful campus setting”…“to form a strong community and to pursue their educational goals,” students said.

The Princeton Review is headquartered in Framingham, Massachusetts, with editorial offices in New York and across the country. The company is known for its test preparation, education, and college admission services. It is not affiliated with Princeton University.