Princeton University remains at the top of U.S. News & World Report’s rankings

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Nassau Hall

By Philip Sean Curran, Staff Writer
Princeton University remained the top national university in America in the annual college rankings of U.S News & World Report for 2017.
This was the sixth year in a row that Princeton finished either tied for first or held the top spot outright. Harvard University finished second, while Yale University and the University of Chicago tied for third.
“We are grateful for the recognition in the U.S. News & World Report rankings,” Princeton spokesman John Cramer said Tuesday.
“While rankings can be useful tools, they cannot fully capture the distinctiveness of any institution,” he said. “We encourage prospective students and their families to collect as much information as they can about colleges and universities of interest and to visit them to find the best academic and social fit.”
Two counselors who work at two local high schools on Tuesday offered similar positions on the rankings: that students and their families need to look beyond the numbers to find a school that will be a good match.
“It’s a useful guide, but it’s not the absolute truth. You’ve got to still look at what’s right for you,” said Patti Lieberman, who leads the college counseling program at Princeton High School.
“We do a lot of education with our families on what the rankings can capture and what they can’t,” said Sarah Graham, director of college counseling at Princeton Day School and also a Princeton University graduate.
For the town, having a top-flight university means residents can audit classes and take advantage of cultural events that it has to offer.
“That’s one of the great things about living in Princeton,” Mayor Liz Lempert said Tuesday.
The university has been seen as critical to the economy of central New Jersey. Peter M. Crowley, president and CEO of the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce, said Tuesday that the university drives economic development and attracts tourists to the region.
“The university is a huge draw for visitors,” Mayor Lempert said. “It’s exciting to live in a community where there are so many smart people working on exciting projects, often things that are changing the course of history.”