US News & World Report ranks Academy No. 1

By Air Force News on September 14, 2011

The U.S. Air Force Academy is ranked top in the nation by high school guidance counselors, second in the nation in aeronautical and astronautical engineering and came away with several more top-tier rankings in the U.S. News & World Report's Best College Rankings for 2012.

The magazine released its rankings Sept. 12.

A new category added this year, high school counselor rankings, ranked the Academy No. 1 among liberal arts colleges. 

"In spring 2011, we asked guidance counselors from all the high schools in U.S. News's 2010 Best High Schools rankings as well as from the largest private independent schools nationwide, to tell us which national universities and national liberal arts colleges they think offer the best undergraduate education to their students," According to U.S. News and World Report. "They rated the universities on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being the top score) or marked 'don't know' if they were unfamiliar with that particular college."

The Academy ranked second-best in the nation in aeronautical and astronautical engineering among undergraduate programs, for the 11th consecutive year. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's main campus in Daytona Beach, Fla., retained the top spot, while its Prescott, Ariz., campus came in third this year.

The Academy tied for the No. 5 ranking of best undergraduate engineering programs, with California Polytechnic State University and the U.S. Naval Academy.

One of the Air Force Academy's other engineering programs, electrical engineering, also earned the No. 5 slot in this year's rankings of undergraduate electrical engineering programs.

The Academy also received several other rankings. It's tied for No. 33 in the national liberal arts colleges rankings and under that category came in at No. 3 for Top Public Schools. The Academy also ranked No. 55 among best undergraduate business programs.

"The school has 74 percent of its classes with fewer than 20 students, and the student-faculty ratio at United States Air Force Academy is 8:1," according to the U.S. News & World Report rankings.

This is the third time this semester the Academy has been ranked among the top universities in the nation. Forbes ranked the Academy No. 10 in the nation on its 2011 America's Best Colleges List that was released Aug. 3.

Also, the Princeton Review released their The Best 376 Colleges book Aug. 2, which ranks the Academy No. 5 in the nation in professor availability and ranks the Academy's administration as No. 9 in the nation.