According to a recent study by online news site Policymic, The University of Houston ranks fourth nationally and is number one in Texas in meeting U.S. President Barack Obama’s standards for providing a value-minded education.
Policymic recently unveiled its “12 Top Colleges Where Students Get the Best Bang for Their Buck,” and UH is among the higher education institutions leading the pack.
Policymic, a non-partisan news outlet focusing on public policy and politics, measured 12 top U.S. universities using criteria from the U.S. President Barack Obama’s new plan for college affordability. Based on the “President’s Plan to Make College More Affordable,” high-performing, value-minded institutions would earn federal education funding. Likewise, financial aid would be delivered based on students’ academic performances and progress toward graduation. Other points of his plan are setting affordable, transparent tuition rates and reducing student debt.
The plan also calls for a new method of measuring the affordability of universities through a new ratings system that provides students and families information on which institutions deliver the strongest value.
Policymic’s rankings took into consideration student debt upon graduation, starting salaries after graduation, tuition and room and board for four-year institutions, six-year graduation rates, and the percentage of students eligible for Pell grants. Policymic cited UH as an above-average institution with regards to several of these areas. Its assessment of UH, however, recommends bolstering ties with regional employers as a method of improving its graduation rates.
Based on its data, the news outlet reported that the universities on its “12 Top Colleges” list “probably stand to benefit from the new funding structure.”
“Remaining affordable, accessible and student success-oriented, while transforming UH into a Tier One university, has been tremendously challenging,” said UH President Renu Khator. “So, it’s gratifying when our hard work and accomplishments are recognized in performance-based ratings like this.”
The University has been engaged in ongoing efforts to make tuition more transparent to students. Earlier this year, the UH System Board of Regents approved the development of four-year fixed tuition rates at UH. These rates would apply to freshmen entering UH in fall 2014 and maintaining a full course load. For current students, UH tuition is based on a consolidated billing structure that assists in predicting costs.
Additionally, UH currently offers a net price calculator, designed to help students predict and understand their education costs. It also offers incentive programs, such as the Cougar Promise and the tuition rebate program. The Cougar Promise guarantees free tuition and mandatory fees to new in-state freshmen with family incomes at or below $45,000. The $1,000 tuition rebate program provides incentive to undergraduates who meet eligibility requirements, including graduating within four calendar years for four years degrees.
About the University of Houston
The University of Houston is a Carnegie-designated Tier One public research university recognized by The Princeton Review as one of the nation’s best colleges for undergraduate education. UH serves the globally competitive Houston and Gulf Coast Region by providing world-class faculty, experiential learning and strategic industry partnerships. Located in the nation’s fourth-largest city, UH serves more than 40,700 students in the most ethnically and culturally diverse region in the country. For more information about UH, visit the university’s newsroom at http://www.uh.edu/news-events/.