I’m not sure about you, but I get thrilled by rankings of any sorts. They represent the best — or the worst. They help make decisions or reinforce ones that have been made. So when Newsweek/The Daily Beast released its College Ranking Lists 2011 this week, I couldn’t help but prowl through them hoping that I might catch Mizzou among the various categories.
Most beautiful. No.
Happiest. Nope. Sigh.
How about best brainiacs? No sign there.
Potential CEOs? Bleah.
Best food? Surely we do have some of the best grub around. Nope.
Wait. Oh, oh, I see it. I see Mizzou.
No. 11 in… best party schools.
Not quite, when you look at how Newsweek crunched its numbers to score the rankings.
The magazine used five data points to attain an aggregate – out which three involve some form of vice:
Drug law violations for 2009 as a percentage of institution size, with data from the US Department of Education; Liquor law violations for 2009 as a percentage of institution size, with data from the US Department of Education; drug safety grades from College Prowler (a lower grade indicates greater prevalence and access to drugs and alcohol on campus, according to College Prowler surveys); nightlife grades from College Prowler; and Greek Life grades, from College Prowler.
Mizzou chalked up over 880 alcohol violations in 2009, just over a dozen hits less than the top party school, West Virginia University. While there were zero drug violation, we scored a C- on drug safety grade – not something to be proud of either. Here’s the silver lining: we garnered As on nightlife and Greek life.
It’s not the first time that Mizzou made it to the list of party schools. In 2009, MU cracked the Princeton Review’s Top 20 Party Schools in America at No. 17. In the same survey, MU was also listed as having “Dorms Like Palaces” (No. 14) and where “Students Study the Least” (No. 11).
It’s is also not the first time that Mizzou made it to a list of some sorts this year. Last week, Columbia recently landed on Southern Living Magazine’s list of “The South’s Best College Towns,” for its independent arts scene, quantity of colleges, homecoming traditions and “healthy dose of Southern charm.”
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