Inside the college rankings

University of Texas flexes a party school rep, but most beautiful student bodies will surprise you

University of Texas flexes a party school rep, but most beautiful student bodies will surprise you

Newsweek and The Daily Beast's College Rankings 2012 are out — just a little too far past the acceptance deadline to be used as a resource for most recent high school graduates, but perhaps helpful in recognizing, for future reference, the least affordable, the most stressful or the most partying colleges

The University of Texas at Austin ranked No. 17 on the latter list, backed by stats about on-campus disciplinary actions related to drugs and alcohol (there were 45 and 186, respectively) and on-campus arrests related to drugs and alcohol (100 and 119, respectively). 

These party figures seem pretty tame for an undergraduate enrollment of 41,616 — of course, they don't take into consideration the quietly-tallied sorority demerits, nor the arrests for public intoxication on and around Dirty Sixth — but historically-high Princeton Review rankings keep UT in the running for rowdiest. 

 These figures seem pretty tame for an undergraduate enrollment of 41,616, but historically-high Princeton Review rankings keep UT in the running for rowdiest.  

(The photograph that accompanies this party ranking in the Daily Beast article, by the way, is Caffé Medici — formerly Metro Espresso Bar, a quiet coffee shop on the Drag where I passed many a Spanish study session during my undergraduate career — which doesn't exactly paint the picture of "party.")

UT falls woefully behind top-ranked West Virginia University in partying, not to mention Penn State at No. 2, University of Colorado-Boulder at No. 3, Ohio University at No. 4 and Union College (N.Y.) — with a staggering 586 on-campus disciplinary actions for alcohol among an undergraduate student body of 2,260 — ranking fifth.

In other surprising accolades, two Texas Panhandle schools were ranked among the 25 Most Beautiful Colleges, based on college student ratings of the male and female student body on a one-to-10 scale, combined with similar rankings of on-campus architectural aesthetics, plus general weather observations in the region.

West Texas A&M University, just south of Amarillo, ranked No. 21 on the most beautiful list, boasting above-average-looking people and facilities and 263 sunny days per year to boot. Abilene Christian University ranked No. 18, with 178 sunny days per year to gaze upon the attractive males, females and buildings that all earned more than 8.2 points (out of 10). 

Southern Methodist University made the list of the 25 Most Conservative Colleges in the nation. Right-of-center leanings and a political diversity score of 3.7 (out of 10) earned the Dallas private college spot No. 15, with 30 percent of the student population identifying the campus as "very conservative" and 45 percent calling it "conservative."

Do these rankings ring true? What are your party and "most beautiful" college experiences?

 

University of Texas, UT, party, partying, tailgate
The University of Texas at Austin ranked No. 17 among top party colleges.  The Diamond Blogs
Southern Methodist University_SMU_campus
Southern Methodist University ranks among the most conservative college campuses.  Courtesy of Facebook/Southern Methodist University