Maine Universities, Colleges Make the Grade as Top Schools

Article excerpt

FORT KENT, Maine -- A number of Maine colleges have once again caught the eye of a publication that ranks higher learning institutions across the nation.

Maine Maritime Academy in Castine, University of Maine at Farmington, University of Maine at Fort Kent, and Unity College were ranked among the top 50 regional colleges in the North, according to the 2013 edition of U.S. News & World Report's Best Regional Colleges.

Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Colby College in Waterville and Bates College in Lewiston also were ranked sixth, 18th and 22nd, respectively, among the best national liberal arts colleges on the list released by the publisher this week.

The 2013 U.S.News & World Report rankings include more than 1,300 accredited four-year colleges and universities throughout the country. The "Best Regional Colleges" category includes 370 colleges that focus on the undergraduate experience and offer a broad range of programs in the liberal arts and professional studies such as business, nursing and education.

Along with the recognition of being one of the nation's top regional colleges for the northern region, Maine Maritime Academy was ranked among the nation's top 50 engineering colleges in the category of "Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs."

The academy raised its ranking among best regional colleges, north region, from 10th last year to eighth this year. This is the best rating for MMA in this category within the past six years, according to the academy..

Mike Whetston, director of public affairs at MMA, said Friday afternoon that the academy was pleased that it had moved up the list two slots from last year's rankings. Whetston credited the faculty, staff and students as crucial to the improvement.

Referring to the listing among engineering colleges, Whetson said, "We have been getting a lot of praise for that program. …