The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) recently released its rankings for the top colleges and universities in America.  Stanford unsurprisingly took home the top spot garnering a 92 out of 100 score, however the most interesting part of this year’s rankings included the metrics used to award a “winner” or education leader.

This specific metric I want to discuss is the Environment metric.  The Environment of a college takes a look at a school’s campus makeup granting value to diversity.  Within the Environment metric, schools are rated based on the proportion of international students, student ethnicity, faculty diversity, and first time students / Pell Grant recipients.  This point accounts for 10% of a schools overall score and is a great way of putting a number value to a universities campus breakdown.

Within the metric, the clear leaders were public schools within the states of California and New York.  Although La Sierra University in Riverside, Calif., a private institution took home the top spot for college diversity, 8 of the remaining 9 schools identify as public.  These included CUNY City College of New York (#2), California State University Northridge (#3), San Francisco State University (#4), and UCLA (#10) to name a few.

Creating a diversity metric of a college’s score is important.  In today’s society, students care about the type of people a college educates.  It is not enough to tout successful graduates, but now more students want to see success stories that match their own.  Statistics show that the more diverse a classroom, the more individuals learn.  With a growing number of potential students identifying as Hispanic, black, and Asian, diversity in education will become more important as time passes.