Southern Utah University recognized as one of the best colleges in Utah

Undated photo courtesy of Southern Utah University, St. George News / Cedar City News

CEDAR CITY — Southern Utah University has been chosen among the best colleges in Utah, and has several  programs that are ranked as the 2019 Best and Most Affordable options by SR Education Group, which provides resources, products and helpful rankings to help ease the college selection process.

SUU is included on 15 lists and ranked in the top five on six of them, according to a press release from the school.

On several of these published lists, SUU is usually the only school from Utah and offers the lowest tuition, making SUU one of the best options for higher education in Utah and the Intermountain West, the press release says. As applications and enrollment continue to grow, university quality remains a high priority.

College Consensus ranked SUU fourth overall among Best Colleges in Utah for 2018. It was the third-ranked public university. The ranking averaged results from college ranking systems with thousands of real student review scores to produce a unique rating.

“This College Consensus rating is particularly gratifying because it’s a ranking from the students,” SUU Provost Brad Cook said in the press release. “SUU prides itself in being laser- focused on being student-centric. Our dedicated faculty and staff see themselves as student success advocates and work very hard in helping students achieve their academic goals. SUU is a special place and an ideal place for students to academically and socially thrive.”

Utah has developed some of the best public regional universities in the West, including SUU and Weber State, according to College Consensus.

“These are institutions that put affordability, accessibility, and outreach first, and in addition to earning recognition for their quality, they have proven to be leaders in areas like online education and adult learning,” the company said in its rankings. “With Utah’s small population scattered across a huge land, these regional institutions are crucial for making sure Utah’s youth and working adults alike have opportunities for higher learning.”

Read more: SUU ranks among best in nation for social media engagement

College Consensus reported that SUU’s small student body provides students a high degree of personalized attention and student support. Though smaller in size, students are given options and resources that only a major public university can provide, including more than 140 undergraduate programs in all areas, fields and disciplines.

Service learning is also key for the university. Different centers lead student outreach efforts, including the Community Engagement Center, Creative Engagement Center and the Outdoor Engagement Center. There are also centers like the Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service, which focuses on leadership, service, citizenship and research.

SUU’s commitment to the community has not gone unnoticed, as the university celebrated four straight years of recognition on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.

“There is a big difference between a student gaining experience and experiential learning,” said Patrick Clarke, dean of the School of Integrative and Engaged Learning at SUU. “Experiential learning is being able to demonstrate the intentionality in the way a student approaches the experience, how they learn by meeting objectives, document, describe what they would do different next time, and formally work through all the processes they are presented — this is what employers and others are looking for.”

SUU was given a 56.2 rating by College Consensus, an average between the publisher and student consensus. The publisher consensus is a school’s average rating score from the most respected college rankings publishers. A school’s average student review score from around the web comprises the student consensus. Learn more about the methodology here.

The complete ranking can be found on the College Consensus website.

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