U.S. News and World Report has ranked Binghamton University as the best value SUNY school.

In order to identify best value schools, U.S. News examines schools that are known for their academic prowess and affordability, according to the U.S. News website. This year, BU was ranked 73rd for Best Value, placing the University higher than all other SUNY schools on the Best Value Schools rankings list, and allowing BU to surpass previous positions on the listing.

BU President Harvey Stenger shared his thoughts regarding the University’s new ranking, and discussed what determines the University’s value.

“We so often tout our exceptional faculty and the stellar education we provide our students — and rightly so,” Stenger wrote in an email. “But we sometimes forget that we also provide a value that is hard to find elsewhere. Our strong retention and graduation rates clearly demonstrate that our students come to BU to complete their education and graduate on time, and that speaks to our value.”

Moving five places up from last year’s ranking, BU is now ranked 83rd nationally out of 443 national universities. Other SUNY institutions that the University is frequently close with are now ranked marginally lower — for example, University at Buffalo, who is ranked 89th.

Donald Hall, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, explained why he believes this year’s ranking went up compared to previous years.

“These annual rankings serve to highlight BU’s strong foundation of academic excellence and commitment to access for students of all backgrounds,” Hall said in a BingUNews article. “As our dedicated faculty and staff work to provide all of our students with the best educational experience possible, the true value of a Binghamton education rises to the fore.”

U.S. News and World Report measures academic quality and creates customized rankings of every college, according to its website. BU has been featured in their charts for more than three decades, with the public research university improving and climbing up the ranks in certain categories each year.

In contrast to the U.S. News rankings, some students expressed a mixed reaction to their educational experience at BU.

Dylan DiCicco ‘20, a third-year graduate student pursuing a masters of science in accounting, claimed BU needs to improve on the course structure to better help students gain an understanding of core subjects. DiCicco described how the courses he had taken at BU contrasted with his experience taking summer classes at a community college.

“I think the education I had during that time at that community college was the best experience I had ever had,” DiCicco said. “They just seemed really involved, and very passionate about helping their students. And sometimes I don’t feel that way here. I’ve taken some accounting courses where everyone was lost, no one had any idea what was going on, and these were core courses. If we were to learn anything that was important for our job, it was some of these core accounting courses.”

Mallory Fowler, a senior majoring in business administration, had a different perspective. According to Fowler, BU’s reputation “precedes itself,” as the University is constantly improving on its national rankings, providing students with a positive learning environment.

“Another reason I stayed here, rather than transferring out, is I have never felt at this college that I would leave and not be able to get a job,” Fowler said. “I thought there was so much education — every semester I’m learning something new that really is furthering my development. We all joke you go through a class and memorize a bunch of stuff and then you forget it all, but I’ve retained a lot of the stuff I’ve learned here, and my professors are very genuinely interested in what I want to do and how they can better help me. And that’s been really refreshing.”