David M. Granger


AUBURN -- Auburn University has been ranked among the best colleges and universities in the United States in The Princeton Review's annual college reference publication.

The newly published Best 331 Colleges, 2000 Edition gives Auburn high marks in each of its four major categories -- campus life, academics, admissions and financial aid. The rankings and other information in the book are based on more that 59,000 surveys of college students at colleges and universities across the country.

The Best 331 Colleges provides prospective students with basic statistical and contact information on each school. But the publication also includes lists of "party schools," conservative and liberal schools, schools where athletics are important, schools with outstanding libraries and more -- all based on the student surveys.

Surveys of Auburn students indicated they are proud of Ralph Brown Draughon Library, among the happiest, most satisfied students compared to others across the country, conservative, religious, get along well with members of the local community, enjoy reading the campus newspaper, The Auburn Plainsman, and that intercollegiate and intramural sports are popular.

The only negative was the students' dissatisfaction with campus dormitories.

The Princeton Review also listed information about other colleges to which those interested in Auburn apply. According to responses to the surveys, students who apply to Auburn often also apply to Mississippi State University, Florida State University, the University of Georgia, the University of Tennessee, Georgia Tech, the University of Mississippi, Vanderbilt University and the University of Alabama. Of those schools, student surveys indicated that they are least likely to prefer Alabama over Auburn.

The publication calls Auburn's agriculture, engineering and veterinary medicine programs "exceptional," its architecture, pharmacy and nursing programs "highly regarded," and says the College of Business is gaining a reputation ("up and coming").

Also drawing raves were opportunities for involvement in student-centered activities, from playing in the jazz ensemble to working at WEGL-FM, the campus radio station.

The publication adds that Auburn largely attracts students from traditional Southern families, but quoted an unnamed AU student as saying, "Coming to Auburn from up North was the best thing I ever did. The people are real in the South."

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CONTACT: Robert Franek, 212/874-8282.