Campus Life

Forbes names UWF among America’s Top Colleges

By Lauren Haggett, University Communications

The University of West Florida is one of America’s Top Colleges, according to the annual Forbes poll released Aug. 3. This is the first time UWF has been listed in the Forbes ranking. UWF ranked in several categories, including Top 100 Best Buy Colleges, Best Southern Colleges, and Best Research Universities.

UWF was listed at No. 27 on the Top 100 Best Buy Colleges list for 2011. The 100 Best Buy Colleges are calculated by comparing the Forbes ranking for overall quality to the cost of tuition and fees.

In addition to the America’s Best Colleges ranking, and Top 100 Best Buy Colleges ranking, UWF was ranked No. 136 by Forbes in the Best Southern Colleges, as well as No. 168 in the Best Research Universities category.

“This is another significant ‘first’ for the University of West Florida,” said President Judith A. Bense. “It is our goal to provide a first-class education to our students, and this is evidence that we are succeeding. It is indeed rewarding to see our student satisfaction, retention rates, and graduate success at an all time high.”

America’s Top Colleges is a listing of the 650 best undergraduate colleges and universities in America. With an overall ranking of 490, UWF was ranked above six other Florida public universities.

Forbes ranks universities and colleges each year based on student satisfaction, calculated by using student evaluations, as well as retention rates from freshman-to-sophomore year. Post-graduate success is weighed by calculating salary of alumni, listings of alumni in Who’s Who in America and alumni listed in Forbes/CCAP Corporate Officers List.

For more information about the Forbes rankings, visit For a full breakdown of ranking factors and weights, visit