For the 10th consecutive year, The Fiske Guide to Colleges has named University of Mary Washington among the country’s best colleges for delivering outstanding academics and reasonable prices.
Among top-selling publications that compare colleges, the prestigious Fiske Guide is often considered the gold standard resource. The 2020 edition, the 36th annual issue, features more than 300 of the “best and most interesting” public and private colleges and universities in the nation, as well as Canada, Great Britain and Ireland. Listings are based on questionnaires completed by administrators and a cross-section of students.
Along with strong academics, championship athletics and successful graduates, this year’s edition mentions Mary Washington’s rich history, unique traditions like Devil Goat Day and Junior Ring Week, and of course, its beauty: “The campus features classical Jeffersonian buildings, sweeping lawns, brick walkways and breathtaking foliage.”
Fiske points out the strength of UMW’s historic preservation program and the popularity of more recently added programs like biochemistry and communication and digital studies. The publication praises Mary Washington’s emphasis on research and hands-on learning, its study abroad and honors programs, and its accessible professors and favorable faculty-to-student ratio.
“I never imagined that I would find such a highly engaged and compassionate set of professors my first year of college,” the book quotes one UMW student as saying.
Fiske touts Mary Washington’s myriad attributes, including its championship Division III athletic teams, security features like the Rave Guardian app, and facilities such as the multifunctional University Center and the nearly complete Jepson Science Center renovation. The publication points to the James Farmer Multicultural Center, along with shared experiences like a first-year seminar and common read, as promoting an “unusually strong sense of community.”
About UMW’s location, an hour from both Washington, D.C., and Richmond, Fiske says: It’s “a handy asset for the approximately 350 budding politicos who seek internships every year. A large majority of students continue on to jobs after graduation …”
Compiled under the direction of Edward B. Fiske, former New York Times education editor, Fiske is a leading source of information for college-bound students and their parents. It is available in bookstores and as an iPad app on iTunes.