Maryville College's Pearsons Hall

Maryville College students at Pearsons Hall Wednesday are now on a ‘Cool School’ campus.

Maryville College picked up a new college ranking this year among many national recognitions, earning a spot on the “Sierra” magazine “Cool Schools” list.

The Sierra Club compiles the rankings as a comparison of colleges’ commitments to environmentalism.

Four other Tennessee institutions made list of 202 “Cool Schools”: University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt University, Belmont University and Sewanee: The University of the South.

“Cool Schools” rankings are based on data that institutions submit to the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, which in February awarded Maryville College a silver rating through its Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System.

“We want to be known as an institution that practices and teaches sustainability,” said Dr. Tom Bogart, the college’s president. “Our current strategic plan directs us to implement sustainable environmental practices that will lead to decreased energy use, and several people on campus — faculty, staff and students — have really championed this goal.”

Among other accomplishments, the college reduced campus energy use by nearly 10 percent between 2012 and 2014.

Numerous Recognitions

Maryville College also has received recognitions and rankings from various national publications and organizations.

In its September/October 2016 issue, “Washington Monthly” ranked Maryville College No. 100 in its list of top national liberal arts colleges and universities and No. 64 in its “Best Bang for the Buck–South” rankings.

“Washington Monthly,” a bimonthly nonprofit magazine that covers U.S. politics and government, rates schools based on their contribution to the public good in three broad categories: social mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students), research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and Ph.D.s), and service (encouraging students to give something back to their country).

According to “The Princeton Review,” Maryville College is one of the best colleges in the Southeast, in its “2017 Best Colleges: Region by Region” website feature, which highlights 649 colleges that the company considers “academically outstanding.”

Maryville College is one of 139 colleges in 12 states selected for the “Best in the Southeast” designation.

“The Princeton Review” editors base their selections on a survey of college administrators, staff visits and the perspectives of college counselors and advisors.

Only schools that allow “The Princeton Review” to independently survey their students are eligible to be considered for the regional lists, and only schools at which the company sees a strong level of satisfaction among enrolled students make it to the final slate of regional “best” colleges.

The survey asks students to rate their colleges on several issues, from the accessibility of professors to the quality of the campus food.

College of Distinction

The college also is featured on, a website and corresponding e-guidebook dedicated to honoring schools nationwide for their excellence in undergraduate-focused higher education.

Maryville College earned the designation based on excellence in four areas: engaged students, great teaching, vibrant community and successful outcomes.

High school counselors and educators make nominations, and each school is evaluated on key indicators, including student engagement, student empowerment and curricular innovation. The process also includes a review of each institution’s freshman experience, as well as its general education program, strategic plan, and alumni success and satisfaction measures.

Maryville College is listed among 660 colleges and universities that Forbes’ “America’s Top Colleges 2016” report says are “well worth the investment.”

The 197-year-old liberal arts college is one of 15 Tennessee higher education institutions included in the report.

“Forbes” partnered with the Washington, D.C.-based Center for College Affordability and Productivity to evaluate the colleges and universities. It looks at factors such as whether students graduate on time, their debt and whether they are able to get good jobs in their profession.

“U.S. News & World Report” put Maryville College on its second tier of national liberal arts colleges in the magazine’s “Best Colleges 2017” guidebook, which will hit newsstands in early October.

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