BYU first, Harvard second on U.S. News & World Report's enrollment-percentage list

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  • David H
    March 15, 2010 11:42 a.m.

    Why is this even an article?

  • Dave from Taylorsville now
    March 15, 2010 11:29 a.m.

    TO: ok | 6:43 a.m. March 11, 2010

    Dear Mr. College Professor.

    You said, "It may also measure something else, the inability of the applicant to see the broad view of education and the future. They apply to only one place. Hmmm. Well... as a college professor I encourage my students to think and act globally."

    If they don't get into BYU, THEN they consider somewhere else.

    A broad view? Doubt if you get an LDS or conservative prospective from a prof. at Stanford. Hmmm Professor?

    "I encourage my students to think and act globally." GLOBALLY??? I GUARANTEE you that you could go NOWHERE else, other than BYU, and find more students with international experience and foreign language skills.

    To not apply to other schools shows a lack of a broad view??? Just how many schools can your kids go to at one time??? ONE!!! Where they go to will be the place they find the "view" of the world they will receive from that school. I know, it's kind of like, "No matter where you're at, there you are."

  • pride vs humility
    March 11, 2010 9:38 p.m.

    to most popular, huh?: really, vassar, northwestern, stanford? Wouldn't you rather your daughter enjoy a good education AND have peers with the same beliefs? Not to mention professors who have similar beliefs? I worked at BYU for over 6+ years. That clean, wholesome, enlightened, and healthy environment cannot be duplicated and it is to the benefit of every student and faculty to make it that way and to enjoy it. Not to mention the mentoring opportunities far surpass the value of the "vassars" in real life. Not to mention, it sounds like your daughter would benefit from the humility on the Y campus. just sayin....

  • michaelm
    March 11, 2010 9:14 p.m.

    I never got to go to college but my kids all did. They grew up without any contact with other LDS kids. My son was the only LDS kid at his high school and everyone knew it. All four of my kids welcomed being at BYU and BYUI and having much of the pressure off. To finally just be one of the crowd and ordinary may seem an odd thing but my kids always felt under the microscope. Sure they have lots of non LDS friends, still do. But they welcomed the chance to have the same Morales as the general population at school, to have church topics be allowed to be discussed openly, not having to keep their religious opinions to themselves for fear of repercussions. We have lived in the deep south, the West, and Midwest, was the hardest for my kids as Mormons. Church alliances and power bases were strong and lines were always drawn. My kids would get introduced by teachers and coaches as Mormon first, their name second. Going to BYU was a chance to breath. Everyone should live away from UT to appreciate it and not stay in UT too long either.

  • Frustrated BYU Student
    March 11, 2010 7:50 p.m.

    Sigh... If only there weren't BYU grads that fit the stereotype so well, it would be a lot easier to see the less-vocal majority of BYU students who aren't arrogant and ignorant, don't think BYU is somehow superior to all other institutions, and are just here because it is the best choice for us out of anywhere else we were accepted. I didn't apply to Harvard or Yale or anywhere because I had only a small hope of getting in, and if I did get in it would have been too expensive for me. However, if I could have paid for it, I would have maybe tried.

    With all that said, I also want to defend BYU against all those who think it is somehow inferior to most other institutions. You can get a high quality education here, the classes are tough, the teachers are helpful, and we are encouraged to be open minded. It is a high quality University. But to think that somehow it is better for LDS students then anywhere else is just plain ignorant.

  • Doc Sez . . .
    March 11, 2010 6:48 p.m.

    Went to both BYU and U of U, both for undergraduate and graduate degrees. Had great experiences at both schools. When at BYU I lived in Helaman Halls and even then (late 1960's) my dorm mates and I would comment that the entrance structure nearby ought to say "The Campus is Our World" rather than The World is Our Campus. Giving Dick Cheney an honorary doctorate was confirmation of our earlier observations.

  • Re: Wow
    March 11, 2010 4:54 p.m.

    Nicely said. I agree 100%. I think a good education can be had at BYU, but it is people like "U of Wash Offered a full ..." who led me to choose another experience, despite having an opportunity to attend BYU. Having school pride and school spirit is great, but thinking that every other university is of the devil and will destroy testimonies is not an attitude that any LDS person (or any person of any faith, for that matter) should have. It is ignorant and unrealistic. In my view, "U of Wash"'s attitude nicely displays the limited view of the world that a BYU education apparently provides to some who attend there.

    The trademark arrogance is so unbecoming the presumably otherwise good LDS folk who attend and have attended BYU. I know many down-to-earth, great BYU graduates. But far too many display unfettered arrogance and suffer from a superiority complext (a highly-unmerited superiority complext I might add).

  • Urggggg....
    March 11, 2010 4:14 p.m.

    "We're better"

    "No, we're better"

    "No, we are"

    People, GET OVER YOURSELVES!!! Everytime I hear this BYU-Utah diatribe is seriously diminishes my faith in adult behavior. You all sound like two year-olds fighting over who's dad could beat-up who. Neatherthals!!

    Both schools are great, with great people. Can we please, for the love all that is holy, just stop and admit we are BOTH doing well? Sheesh....

  • Brainwashing
    March 11, 2010 3:47 p.m.

    "I have brainwashed my own spawn to want to go live in Provo for their college years....My kids seem to want to have that mind-numbing, soul-limiting experience that is BYU"

    Doesn't look like your kids have all the facts. Basically what you are saying is that your brainwashing worked. Congrats!

  • Wow
    March 11, 2010 3:40 p.m.

    Thanks for the background on your own education and your parenting philosophy, although unsolicited, it was a nice detour . I think you have provided the best example of what many on here think is the problem with your attitude and frankly this article. The suggestion is that somehow BYU has exclusive rights to the correct type of education. What we should all understand, and I think what you fail to, is that edification can be attained at almost any institution of higher learning and nearly never is the student asked to compromise any moral code they have prior to their experience. You (and many other like-minded sponsors of BYU education) really seem to think that everywhere else is Sodom. What are you talking about? "Men are rapists" and "militant homosexuals"--you really have no idea what any experience outside of BYU entails, but you imagine what it must be like in the worst light possible. That, my friend, is the problem.

  • Re: U of Wash offered a full ...
    March 11, 2010 3:34 p.m.

    I am amazed at the ignorance of your comment: "I welcome you to farm your own kids off to the local university, where they too can enjoy the feminist lectures on how all men are rapists and the mind-expanding presence of militant homosexuals condemning all who don't overtly support their noble struggle."

    People joke about the "bubble" that is BYU, and I try to not believe that, but wow. I applied to both Utah and BYU, got into both, and attended Utah. I never heard any of the lectures to which you refer and never came across any militant homosexual. In fact, I had a great experience as an LDS student. I too met my wife at school, and we love serving in our ward.

    If my kids want to go to BYU, so be it, but I pray they will not come out with the narrow-minded view of the world that you have. Even if students really did routinely run into "militant homosexuals" and heard "feminist lectures," they will hear plenty of it in the world, so why not learn how to hear it and keep a testimony at a young age?

  • SoCal Andy
    March 11, 2010 3:33 p.m.

    I had a scholarship to attend BYU in the 70's, chose Utah instead and don't regret it for a minute.

    I have sent two daughters to BYU and don't regret that either.

  • U of Wash offered a full ride...
    March 11, 2010 3:11 p.m.

    U of Washington offered me a full ride scholarship and virtually assured me a path to med school. I chose BYU instead. It was the second-best choice I ever made in my life, second only to marrying my wife (a BYU student).

    Those of you who went elsewhere and loved it: Good for you. I'm glad you enjoyed your experience. I'm glad you didn't go to BYU. Please feel free to steer your children clear of those narrow-minded Zoobies at BYU.

    I have brainwashed my own spawn to want to go live in Provo for their college years. Given how competitive BYU admission has become the last decade or so, I welcome you to farm your own kids off to the local university, where they too can enjoy the feminist lectures on how all men are rapists and the mind-expanding presence of militant homosexuals condemning all who don't overtly support their noble struggle. My kids seem to want to have that mind-numbing, soul-limiting experience that is BYU. I couldn't be happier.

  • Anonymous
    March 11, 2010 3:02 p.m.

    BYU probably has the cheapest tuition and best value and this is even more important for students while in a recession...

    Expect tuition prices to go up at BYU now.... And the cost may go up quickly to eventually match the cost at the other universities that they are being compared with.

  • Re: Proud to be part of the 22%
    March 11, 2010 3:00 p.m.

    This message responds to Re: Proud to be part of the 22% at 1:58 p.m. (and to the original post to which you responded)

    I had the same experience. I have been LDS all of my life (grew up in Utah), love the LDS church, applied to both BYU and the U of U (and some other schools), got in to both schools, and chose to attend Utah.

    I loved my experience at the U. I was not at all surprised at the many, many opportunities I had to interact with other LDS students. I enjoyed interacting with students who lived "Honor Code" standards even though their university did not force it on them. It was easy to tell who really loved the gospel and embraced church standards and who did not. I loved (most of) my professors. I rarely encountered what I would consider "anti" LDS professors. I also enjoyed learning from people with different beliefs than I have (many of my professors were LDS, many were not). I believe that greatly enhanced my education.

    I am amazed at the one-track mind of so many BYU types who think no other experience can compare.

  • A BYU Alumni in NYC
    March 11, 2010 2:57 p.m.

    I remember the Letter from BYU awarding me my scholarship for my Freshman year in 1982- full tuition for a semester was $605. Can you believe it? BYU provided me a good education. It's easy to see why it's students want to go their - the church's underwriting of the cost makes it a good value.

  • re: re: Facts are....
    March 11, 2010 2:08 p.m.

    america's best colleges refers to undergrad. they rank graduate programs too. they even rank world universities that take into account both undergrad and grad prestige. facts are funny things is right. also, utah does rank higher than BYU on their top 400 in the world, BYU isn't listed... no bid deal though

  • Facts, Again, Are Funny Things
    March 11, 2010 2:02 p.m.

    OK, let me see if I can walk you through this process.

    We are discussing USNEWS "America's Best Colleges" ranking (this is where we are getting the 71 and 126 numbers). Surely, you saw that USNEWS also ranks "America's Best Graduate Schools," right? Did this make you think that there was a distinction in the rankings?

    OK, within the category of "America's Best Colleges," they rank the undergraduate ranking of LIKE universities. One of those categories is National Universities and another is Liberal Arts Colleges. If you check the methodology section of the rankings, it is clear they are ranking undergraduate programs of National Universities (they state it explicitly and implicitly by tracking ACT/SAT, not GRE/MCAT etc..). That is so you know the environment of your undergraduate experience, NatU will have tons of students and grad students, LibA will only have a couple thousands students and few grad students.

    If given the time we could go into how the word "college" connotes undergraduate education, with "university" as a larger catch-all. You obviously aren't getting the ranking thing anyway, so don't worry your little head about it.

  • don
    March 11, 2010 1:58 p.m.

    B Y Who ?

  • Re: Proud to be part of the 22%
    March 11, 2010 1:58 p.m.

    Ditto. I was accepted to BYU, went to Utah instead. One of the best decisions of my life.

    There are plenty of schools besides BYU where you can meet other LDS people, have a great social experience, grow your testimony, and get a great education.

  • Knowing now
    March 11, 2010 1:33 p.m.

    Knowing what I know now for my profession I would have gone elsewhere, to a more prestigious school because the name of the school you go to matters. It matters a whole lot.

    However, you can't beat the cost and the atmosphere as an LDS person.

  • Levi
    March 11, 2010 1:28 p.m.

    It is funny to me to watch a person get their degree from BYU, then years later they wake up and leave the mormon church.

    To talk with them after a job interview and they tell how uncomfortable it was to explain BYU to HR guy.....Priceless.

  • BYU dominates the U
    March 11, 2010 1:20 p.m.

    How come this article doesn't mention BYU's dominance over Utah in basketball and Football the past 4 years? That's all we really want to read about anyway.

  • RE: Facts Are Funny Things
    March 11, 2010 1:09 p.m.

    "Schools in the National Universities category, such as Yale and UCLA, offer a full range of undergraduate majors, master's, and doctoral degrees. These colleges also are committed to producing groundbreaking research."

    This is a quote describing the "National Universities" category in US News & World Report, which ranks BYU at 71 and Utah at 126. Apparently they take undergraduate, master's and doctoral degrees, as well as research into account. It is not just undergraduate rankings. Yes, facts are indeed funny things.

  • A_Chinese_American
    March 11, 2010 1:07 p.m.

    My daughter got ACT 32 and SAT 2280 this year. She applied to BYU, ONLY BYU. Yesterday, she got the notice for her heritage scholarship. She even got some other school's schoolarship offerings even she did NOT apply to their schools, because she is a finalist for "National Merit Scholarship" and is one of the 20 Utah girl candidates for "The United States Presidential Scholars". Those offers like free 4-years full tuition plus $500 per month for living plus $2000 oversea study plus $2000 for laptop, but she don't care. She WILL go to BYU this fall. I am a happy father!

  • Relativism
    March 11, 2010 12:59 p.m.

    This is where I couldn't disagree more with le prof:

    I am ready to admit that there are other considerations for university attendance than academics. Those considerations may have more to do with the students overall experience, they include: cost, ease, social environment, etc... This I grant.

    But to say that the numerical rankings have no relevance is a coating you put on the pill you don't want to swallow. There is good and better, there is better and best. Why do people want to conflate the academic prestige of their school with something arbitrary like, "I liked it." Preferences do not academic excellence make.

  • Alaska
    March 11, 2010 12:55 p.m.

    I attended Harvard & BYU. I enjoyed both, but for religious reasons-I finished at BYU.

    The real issue is who can afford college? Many low-icnome families simply cannot afford the high cost of attending college.

    As a country we are losing alot of worthy students.

  • Monsieur le prof
    March 11, 2010 12:31 p.m.

    Every school is just what you make it. BYU has very fine programs in several areas and their degrees are first class. It enjoys a good reputation and has been rated as the best "bargain" in America because of its low tuition and its quality education.

    The average GPA of entering students is very high and it's difficult to get in because of the large numbers of applicants and the cut-off cap that limits the size of the university.

    Each person chooses the atmosphere he feels he will succeed in. There is no right or wrong, nor good or bad, just different. The numerical rankings are arbitrary and vary according to the pollers' (sometimes) biased opinions.

    I loved my classes and teachers at BYU and found them better than those at another local school where I worked on my graduate degrees. But I would never downgrade that school.

  • Facts Are Funny Things
    March 11, 2010 12:14 p.m.

    Did anybody else listen to the rationale of these kids who chose BYU over Princeton? Nothing about the school ranking, "how good on an institution is," they wanted to be around other Mormons. And they seem to have a few mistaken notions 1) Provo is the only place with a substantial Mormon student population and 2) you must have a substantial Mormon student population to have fun or survive.

    There can be no academic justification for choosing BYU over Princeton, Stanford, or Harvard. People have come on these boards and admitted way too much. If you were in at Stanford and went to BYU, you made that choice for non academic reasons (that is for sure!)

    Let's not get it twisted, BYU is #71 as an undergraduate institution. That is what they focus on as people have stated, and there are 70 schools that do it better. It is a top feeder school, because most schools with 30,000 students do research and have advanced grad programs. The U is ranked above BYU every time when overall academic prestige is taken into account (read research and grad programs).

  • U of U LDS Student
    March 11, 2010 12:14 p.m.

    I am LDS and have lived in Utah my whole life, and I go to the U. I didn't even apply to BYU. It's sad that they feel like BYU is the only place to be if you are LDS. True, the LDS faith seems to be a minority at the U, but it has been a fantastic growing experience to interact and live with people of so many different faiths. However, the LDS church is also very strong here. In the dorms the people who are LDS are all very close with one another and we have so much fun. We have LDS sororities and fraternities and various activities throughout the week to be involved with our own religion, which is fun. It's great that the people who go to BYU want to go there, but you should choose a school for the education you receive also, not jsut because its a "Mormon school". No matter where you are you can put yourself into a situation that you feel comfortable... why not be exposed to diversity as well?

  • RE: Chose USU over BYU
    March 11, 2010 12:08 p.m.

    First of all, I am not doubting you had an awesome experience at USU. Maybe even as awesome as the experience I am having at BYU. But how do you know you wouldn't have a great experience at BYU too? Trust me. There is plenty of "diversity of thought" at BYU if that is what you want. But if you want to cling to stereotypes, go ahead.

  • ACT Scores continued
    March 11, 2010 12:07 p.m.

    25th/75th percentile for ACT scores

    Harvard 31/35
    Princeton 30/34
    Columbia 28/33
    Cornell 28/32

    BYU 25/30
    UofU 21/27
    Utah State 20/27

    Boise State 19/24
    Idaho 20/26

    Colorado 24/28
    Iowa State 22/27
    Kansas 21/26
    Nebraska 22/28
    Texas 24/30

    University of Arizona 21/26
    Berkeley 25/31
    UCLA 24/31
    Stanford 30/34
    Washington 23/29

    Notre Dame 31/34
    Georgetown 28/32
    Connecticut 24/28

    Alabama 21/27
    Florida 25/30
    Kentucky 21/27
    Vanderbilt 30/33

  • Good n' Bad
    March 11, 2010 12:06 p.m.

    Well, I had a good time at the Y, but two of my friends that came with me ended up pregnant by their sophomore year. Going to BYU does not grantee Celestial glory just as going somewhere else does not prevent it.

    I think too many people (LDS and non) rely to heavily on others opinions and actions to justify themselves. I think it is best to decide for yourself who you are and what you want, then the surroundings do not matter nearly as much.

  • Chose USU over BYU
    March 11, 2010 11:52 a.m.

    I am LDS, grew up outside Utah, and applied to two schools: USU and BYU. BYU accepted me and offered a scholarship, but I turned it down and enrolled at USU. BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE. I loved my time in Logan and wouldn't trade my experience there for anything in the world.

    The USU LDS Institute provided a fantastic spiritual learning environment, but I was also able to cross the street and experience some true diversity of thought. I had a great mix of friends at USU who shared my faith, and many others who didn't, and that turned out to be the perfect balance for me.

  • Misreading the study
    March 11, 2010 11:52 a.m.

    Of course this survey needs to be read carefully. I would imagine that Brown University, Cornell, University of Penn and other Ivy Leagues Schools accept a number of students who then go to Harvard, Princeton, and Yale.

    Or course BYU is not in the same league as the top schools. Having said that, they do attract some pretty good students - many of whom could have attended the top schools - and they belong among the nation's top hundred schools.

    Average high school GPA of incoming freshmen - 3.8
    Average ACT scores of incoming freshmen - 28.2

    Compare to other MWC schools: (25th and 75th percentiles for ACT)

    Air Force Academy - 28/31
    BYU - 25/30
    TCU - 23/28
    Colorado State - 22/26
    Utah - 21/27
    Wyoming - 21/26
    San Diego State - 20/25
    New Mexico - 19/25
    UNLV - 19/24
    U of U - 21/27

  • To: To: Perturbed by Decisions
    March 11, 2010 11:37 a.m.

    Your question is right on. I think that the supposition is that with tens of thousands of singles of the same faith in the same area, the chances of finding a "compatible" match are increased. But even at BYU, one's number of contacts are restricted to ward and class acquaintances, that might be in the hundreds. I'd guess that most major universities have large enough Mormon populations that one could find a Mormon mate.

  • The U
    March 11, 2010 11:37 a.m.

    I have 3 kids at the U and they all have an extremely strong LDS support group on campus. All 3 chose the U over BYU because the U has a stronger science department and love the experiences they are having. FYI - Most of the LDS prophets graduated from. . . the U!!!!!

  • ?????
    March 11, 2010 11:09 a.m.

    What's all the fuss about? People who apply to BYU actually want to go there.

    The whole ranking business is silly. It's designed to sell magazines.

    The proof of higher education is in the graduates. BYU's graduates are admitted to the best graduate and professional schools in the world, win the best fellowships, and make great contributions in the communities and on the job.

  • Anonymous
    March 11, 2010 10:50 a.m.

    Although this is cool, I think a real indicator of how "popular" a school is would be how many people apply. That would make sense to me. Or maybe a combination of the two.

  • Re:??
    March 11, 2010 10:47 a.m.

    All schools with notbale sports and great academics(including Michigan, Cal, and Stanford) give exceptions to athletes.

    BTW your argument (which I don't fully understand, but seems to question the ethics of athletes given easier rides) is weak. Do you realize that because of BYU's athletics program and the huge pile of $$$ that it brings in, literally hundreds of academically excellent students are given FULL tuition scholarships yearly. Many academically excellent, median-raising students attend BYU partially because of BYU football and basketball.

    Also, athletes are not the only ones given easier paths. Did you know that children of BYU faculty members, minorities, handicapped students, recent converts, international students, and others with unique talents or situations are placed in the same secondary applicant pool which allows them MUCH easier acceptance to BYU. Children of faculty can get in with a 3.0 GPA and a 22-24 ACT! This is a perk which is passed a long as a "thank you" to BYU professors.

    Source: My BYU business ethics course which our professor revealed these policies in detail in order to evaluate if they are ethical

  • Proud to be part of the 22%
    March 11, 2010 10:43 a.m.

    I applied to BYU as a backup, got in, and elected to go elsewhere. I had a wonderful experience as an active LDS, met my wife in college, and would not trade my experience for anything. My exposure to people and views different from my own was one of the best parts of my education. I participated in the Institute, which gave me great interaction with other LDS as well.

    I am shocked (well, not really) at the arrogance of many commenters that LDS people who go to other universities, including the U of U, only go there because they could not get in to BYU. Get out of the bubble. There are places to go and great things to be done by LDS people outside of Provo.

    I would say, if someone is struggling with a testimony or is from outside of Utah and has never been around a lot of LDS kids, then maybe BYU is a good option. But think of all the good LDS kids could be doing for the Church on other campuses that ends up getting wasted because so many parents virtually insist that their child attend BYU.

  • BYU,the Oral Roberts of the West
    March 11, 2010 10:36 a.m.

    Interesting article.

  • What a joke
    March 11, 2010 10:32 a.m.

    This ranking has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of education at BYU! But clearly that "quality" is expressed here by these comments from people who apparently cant even read the article correctly. BYU has a high enrollment percentage because of its relative ease to get in to as well as the lack of other LDS schools to lure them somewhere else, and dont compare it to the U because both schools are a joke compared to other Universities around the country. BYU is the only school little mormon children have to dream about attending some day.. Think about if Notre Dame was the only catholic school, Im sure their enrollment percentage would be a lot higher but schools like BC, Gonzaga, Saint Marys, Georgetown, Holy Cross, Marquette, USD, Villanova ect take away from Notre Dames enrollment rates. I guess you could make the arguement that BYU has to compete against BYU-Idaho, and BYU-Hawaii....

  • Re: to byu alumni
    March 11, 2010 10:19 a.m.

    Hardly noticed... except apparently to dental schools, law schools, medical schools, accounting firms, other businesses, etc.

  • I'd die happy if
    March 11, 2010 10:07 a.m.

    my outstanding LDS son could get admitted to either BYU or BYU-I... I had a great life experience at BYU... he's hardworking, humble, dedicated and in line with all principles of the university - academics don't come easily... he'll get back from a mission in 5 months and hard-work his way through it, he'll make good (LDS and other) friends at a state school - meet some nice LDS girl, get married and have kids at some point. His perfect SAT sister was accepted to 9 of the top universities in the US, national merit finalist scholarships out the yazoo... and well, life hasn't been so good where she ended up. Good luck to all the college bound regardless where they end up, just hope they're doing all the right things in life, because life matters - school choice, not so much I guess.

  • The Truth is Now Told
    March 11, 2010 10:06 a.m.

    I did one year at Utah, three years at BYU and four graduate years at the University of Washington. BYU students were the brightest and most motivated, and the training was indeed superior at BYU. BYU students were also the most uptight and dorky. So, go with what feels good to you.

  • Re: Jess
    March 11, 2010 10:06 a.m.

    To clarify my comments, I'm referring to the quality of BYU's Undergaduate applicants to law school, not to the quality of BYU Law itself (which is ranked at the bottom of tier 1, but should be more around 25.)

    Adcomms at top law, medical, dental, and MBA programs love pulling from the BYU Undergraduate pool. This is because they 1) Are very intellegent and many times deferred going to better undergraduate schools in order to go to BYU, 2) Have strong international experience, 3) Increase the conservative diversity at their school (which schools like NYU, Columbia, and Berkeley surprisingly have a problem doing) without increasing the number of crazies which tend to come from other uber-conservative institutions, and 4) Because LDS Academia at top institutions is HUGE. I was speaking with some Harvard Law Professors who said that they see tons of LDS faculty, but have never met an evangelical in academia.

  • Cougar Belief
    March 11, 2010 10:05 a.m.

    RE: still

    Have any Cougars claimed here that BYU is an "ivy league school". It always amazes me how people who hate a group of people like making stuff up about it.

  • @Lindon
    March 11, 2010 10:04 a.m.

    "BYU will always be synonymous with polygmy"

    Really? Living out East that NEVER came up when discussing my BYU degree. Then again, you've probably been a non-Mormon in Utah all your life and don't get out much.

  • California Cougar
    March 11, 2010 10:02 a.m.

    I loved my experience at BYU. My son's attending a local community college and having a great experience.
    I guess if I had been accepted to either Harvard or BYU I would have been flattered to be accepted by the #1 school in the nation, but would have attended BYU for economic reasons alone. My perception is that BYU undergraduate students get a rigorous education and do very well in graduate shool admissions and the cost of tuition is substantially lower than Harvard.

  • To: Perturbed by Decisions
    March 11, 2010 9:55 a.m.

    Please explain how a nice mormon girl at BYU differs from a nice mormon girl anywhere else?

  • RE: Stanford
    March 11, 2010 9:41 a.m.

    Way to catch an obvious inadvertent typo. I am sure you have never made one in your life.

  • RE: The Full Truth
    March 11, 2010 9:39 a.m.

    You are mostly correct. BYU is, by design, mainly an undergraduate institution.

    However there are some exceptions, most notably BYU's Masters of Accounting (MAcc) program, which is consistently ranked in the top 10 in almost any rankings system I have seen. In many it is continually battling UT-Austin for the #1 spot. I know this because I am applying for BYU's MAcc program this year, and am currently in the school's Accounting Junior core.

    During the process the faculty tells us that, because getting into the junior core is already so competitive, they would love to admit everyone from it into the MAcc program. However, because BYU intends to remain mainly an Undergraduate institution, they limit the amount that each Graduate program can admit. Therefore only 60%-70% of applicants from the Junior core are admited. I hope I am able to get into BYU's MAcc program, but if not, I am well prepared to go to any other school to finish my master's degree. BYU is, after all, an excellent feeder for professional programs.

  • Anonymous
    March 11, 2010 9:36 a.m.

    "I'd come here," he said. "Extracurricular (activities) are good here. I haven't seen Harvard on ESPN."

    And I haven't seen BYU on ESPN either, stupid MWC tv package. ;-)

  • Great Undergrad Experience
    March 11, 2010 9:34 a.m.

    In support of an earlier statement that BYU is a feeder school (from's fact page):

    #1 - Producer of dental school-bound students (AADSAS)

    #6 - Producer of law school-bound students (LSAC)

    #10 - Number of graduates who go on to earn PhDs from 1997-2006 (NORC/NSF)

    Top 10 - Producer of medical school-bound students (AAMC)

    Sure, BYU has a huge undergrad population that rivals large state schools (30,000+), but these stats are still noteworthy.

  • to byu alumni
    March 11, 2010 9:29 a.m.

    Cougars LOVE to think that everyone that is not one of them should be pumping their gas. Get over it, Cougs, you are not ivy-league. You are barely noticed outside of Utah and Mormondom.

  • still
    March 11, 2010 9:26 a.m.

    just because BYU is "more popular" than Hale, still does not make BYU an "ivy league school" (contrary to Cougar belief).

  • ??
    March 11, 2010 9:24 a.m.

    BYU has high academic standardS!? Just ask the athletic department for all the athletes they have signed for sports with LOW grades and LOW ACT/SAT scores. Double standard. If you are an athlete you get a break. If you don't believe just investigate it. Most the other schools in this article DON'T bend. You don't have to reply just investigate it. You will see.

  • Perturbed by Decisions
    March 11, 2010 9:20 a.m.

    My three oldest nephews all graduated from high school with ACTs in the 30s and a couple 4.0s, one 3.9something. My dad's neighbor scored a 36 on ACT and graduated with a 4.0 - Sterling scholar candidate in computer science. They have all decided to attend BYU. I wondered why they would all choose BYU when their chances for acceptance to top programs were so good. They all said that they would wait until grad school (professional school) to apply to those top schools, for now, they wanted the BYU experience. I'd suggest that the desire to marry a "nice Mormon girl" played a roll in their choices. At the same time, perhaps it wasn't much of a decision. Their parents all attended BYU and they grew up with that being their expectation - missions, graduate from BYU, then comes the decisions about where to go.

  • all the BYU fans
    March 11, 2010 9:17 a.m.

    No, I would not say BYU is the Harvard of the west. I would say that Harvard is the BYU of the east, however. :)

  • re: Jeff | 8:36 a.m
    March 11, 2010 9:15 a.m.

    One word: Bitter

  • Lindon
    March 11, 2010 9:14 a.m.

    BYU will always be synonymous with polygmy.

  • Eric
    March 11, 2010 9:13 a.m.

    I will always be thankful for the opportunity I had to attend and graduate from BYU.

  • jess
    March 11, 2010 8:38 a.m.

    to The Full Truth,

    As a graduate of the J. Rueben Clark law school, I can tell you that you are wrong.

  • Jeff
    March 11, 2010 8:36 a.m.

    Two words: academic censorship

  • multi-tasker
    March 11, 2010 8:30 a.m.

    I went to eight different universities
    BYU was by far the most social
    Even though I am not LDS I stil root for the Cougs

  • Stanford
    March 11, 2010 8:19 a.m.

    There's no D in Stanford. Unless you are on the episode of Saved By the Bell where they go to a college that sounds like Stanford.

  • RE Re don't forget the cost
    March 11, 2010 8:14 a.m.

    In the end, where you got the degree is not as important as the fact that you got it. It helps when you got it from a good, respected institution. Guess what, BYU is well respected in most areas. After you get some work experience, that matters more than your degree and where you got it from in most areas anyway.

    Also, I can think of at least one area where a degree from BYU is better then Standford (or almost anywhere else for that matter): Accounting, which is what I am currently majoring in at BYU.

  • Dave (a BYU alum)
    March 11, 2010 8:02 a.m.

    I would bet the majority of the resentment here comes from people not being able to go to BYU, (I know, you're going to say you could have gone anywhere, but we all know that's not true).

    However, those of you who are already parading around with this new ranking probably don't understand how these rankings work, and how pointless they really are. If you did, you would be smart enough to know the rankings are about as legit as the BCS.

    Let's just take it for what it is, and be grateful for a little recognition, and leave it at that.

  • The Full Truth
    March 11, 2010 7:57 a.m.

    BYU's national image is as an amazing professional-school-feeder, with first-tier professional-school graduate programs and extremely good (top-10) undergraduate professional programs. Humanities/ Education Undergraduate programs are top-100. Graduate Research is not so much respected (top-250). BYU policy prohibits significant $$$ going toward research-school graduate recruiting and has even stated that the First Presidency's vision is not for BYU to be an outstanding graduate-PhD school, but an undergrad and professional school.

    I just finished the application cycle for law school (and will be attending my pick of the top five law schools--Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Columbia, Chicago). During the process the admissions deans made it clear that to them, BYU is at a level comparable to Berkeley, Texas-Austin, all non Princeton-Yale-Harvard Ivy league schools, UCLA, USC, Brown, Duke, Michigan, and pretty much every other top school except for Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Stanford. This is because BYU's student quality is extremely high, albeit sometimes weird.

    BYU is an awesome school!

    UofU seems to be the opposite of BYU-- average undergraduate programs, weak professional graduate programs, and very highly regarded and really outstanding research/PhD/MD programs.

  • justjoe
    March 11, 2010 7:49 a.m.

    I went to Utah in the 60's. I thought then that many went to BYU because of its close proximity to Utah. Those BYU girls always came up on the weekends anyway.

  • Dixie Dan
    March 11, 2010 7:46 a.m.

    Given a choice of attending Harvard, Standford or BYU, which one would you choose? I'm not sure who would be my #1 or #2 pick, but I do know who which school would be #3.

  • AggieFan
    March 11, 2010 7:42 a.m.

    I applied, was accepted, and even offered a scholarship to BYU. I went to USU and had the time of my life wearing TRUE BLUE!

  • BYU fan
    March 11, 2010 7:40 a.m.

    I'm a life-long BYU fan, but these statistics need to be qualified. BYU is bound to be many people's #1 choice because of the religious angle. But when comparing to Ivy League schools, you need to remember that people that apply to one Ivy League (and have a chance of getting in) apply to several Ivy League schools. Since they are the best students several schools accept them, and they can only choose one. What this study actually shows is that BYU is not aggressive in recruiting the best students in the country unless they happen to be Mormon. This is why they are #71, and Harvard is #1.

  • Florida Ute
    March 11, 2010 7:30 a.m.

    BYU Grads are funny!

  • Full Ride?
    March 11, 2010 7:24 a.m.

    Dear Student in Arizona:
    Please note that a full tuition scholarship is very different from a full ride. In fact, it is very rare for anyone to receive a full ride scholarship for anything other than athletics. The vast majority of schools do not offer full ride scholarships for academics. I am happy for you decision to come to BYU, but chances are you were not offered a full ride scholarship to anywhere.

  • Johnny Moser
    March 11, 2010 7:09 a.m.

    I think that the real issue when you compare the top 10 and 17 is acceptance rate. When BYU gets to the point that it is approaching the single digit acceptance rate and it still has a 70+% Yield then we can make the comparison that it is in the same "category" and is the same league. As for the 80+% acceptance school, would image that nearly 100% of the pass-overs are in the medical school. So apples to apples they are the "most accepting" organization on the list. They should feel good about getting a yield as high as they have considering they accept every undergrad that applies.

  • Utah #17
    March 11, 2010 7:01 a.m.

    I wasn't going to bring Utah up, but since BYU haters and mormon haters feel the need to respond let's clarify that the reason Utah is #17 is because many of them prefered BYU but wasn't accepted.

  • RENow watch all the BYU fans...
    March 11, 2010 6:58 a.m.

    3...2...1...BYU is not just the Harvard of the west"... but, they're actually better than Harvard. You can take that to the bank.

  • ok
    March 11, 2010 6:43 a.m.

    #6 is Yeshiva? So what does this poll in a business magazine, USNWR, measure? Loyalty to where you applied. I am not surprised that the Y came in first. It should have.

    It may also measure something else, the inability of the applicant to see the broad view of education and the future. They apply to only one place. Hmmm. Well... as a college professor I encourage my students to think and act globally. My children I advised to choose an array of possibilities, and they did, and they have done well. Do not put all of your eggs into one basket. Not a good idea in this world that is constantly moving.

    This is news? Yeshia in 6th?

    PS -- you gotta hand it to USNWR, they get some excellent publicity for reporting data. coooooool.
    Take a hundred out of petty cash, mr. marketer, and go shopping will yah.

  • Chris
    March 11, 2010 6:30 a.m.

    Congratulations! I didn't get into BYU at the time, due to Lost ACt exam. I instead went on mission, and went to another college. I think, despite how they have an honor code, that not all schools have, and can be hard to follow, it kind of shows that people, who have principles, are willing to go to a school, that will have an environment that encourages it. A degree is not any different from one school to the next. Math is still math, english is still english, etc. The diference may be the price it takes to get that degree. As far as being Mormon at other schools and being eaten up? What???? Mormons prosper everywhere. They might be in schools where they have to decide whether or not to participate at an event that might not occur at BYU, but in life, you have to make choices. And those that hold on to their values, they do well. Those who don't, have problems. And you know what? It's the same at BYU.

  • ER in AF
    March 11, 2010 3:50 a.m.

    Grew up In Utah county. Went on a mission and found many, many fellow missionaries who said they wanted to go to BYU. I couldn't understand it until one young man explained he was the only member in his high school and was tired of having to think about the church membership thing every time he looked at a girl. He said he just wanted to go to a place he could go to school, make friends with girls and not have to think about membership compatibility. If he saw a girl he thought was cute, he could focus on talking smoooooooth... rather than thinking about eternal progression.

    That BYU is a very good economic bargain and is ranked well in many academics is a boon. I think BYU was ranked in the top 10% for law students having jobs before graduation. Its accounting school is #1 or 2 every year. Great athletics and a great locale for outdoor sports. My daughter did not choose it and I graduated from the U, but I still can easily see why so many would want to go. Good job.

  • BYU
    March 11, 2010 3:08 a.m.

    I've attended four different colleges: UVSC (now UVU), BYU, the University of Washington, and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses. I'm convinced a practicing Mormon can have a fulfilling college life just about anywhere, but at the same time, there's something special about BYU. I reaped a lot of benefits from BYU's emphasis on undergraduate research and faculty mentoring. It also doesn't hurt that BYU is a private school; the resources available to students are phenomenal, especially considering the cost of tuition. BYU can offer a wide variety of classes because of its large student body. This was important to me; I ended up taking several classes that almost certainly wouldn't have been offered at a smaller institution due to insufficient interest and resources.

    BYU isn't a perfect school by any stretch of the imagination, but for committed students with strong Mormon convictions, it's a fantastic place to get an education.

  • Wait a minute
    March 11, 2010 2:55 a.m.

    Someone is complaining that people want to be with people such as themselves? BYU has an honor code, for those of you who don't understand that, it means you actually have to agree to certain standards and then live by them, you know honor a contract. I feel sorry for the kids that graduate from a school that's living off past glories and a liberal puff education. BYU is building it's name and reputation, Harvard is living off it's name from fifty years ago. Who do you think got us in this financial mess? Your basic, non graded Harvard MBA Grad. Thanks but I got out before it got bad:). I must be a dumb Mormon, proud of BYU.

  • Juan Figuroa
    March 11, 2010 1:53 a.m.

    After one lame year at another college, went to BYU and had a rough time catching up. Then went on to earn graduate degrees in law and journalism. BYU was tough and prepared me well for graduate studies and for real life. Frankly, grad school was a breeze compared to most of my classes at BYU!

  • BYU is a good place
    March 10, 2010 11:51 p.m.

    had a four year full-ride scholarship offer to any State school in the State of Washington. I turned it down, attended BYU for my undergrad and went to the University of Washington for medical school.

    I felt very well prepared for med school with my BYU education. BYU has very good representation at UW medical school. The medical school and dental school instructors have commented that BYU students come to graduate school more prepared than those that come from other undergraduate programs.

    I had a great time, received an excellent education, and have no regrets about attending BYU. But, I think a person can get a great education wherever they go to school... after all, it's up to the individual to put forth the necessary effort to learn what is needed to be successful.

  • Re don't forget the cost
    March 10, 2010 11:45 p.m.

    A BYU degree is not the same as a Stanford degree. These rankings mean nothing.

  • Hittin u from the 019
    March 10, 2010 11:04 p.m.

    Congrats BYU you officially beat Harvard in a category that does not even matter. BYU has high academic standards but let's be real, Harvard is Harvard. It may not be the right place for everyone but if BYU has to publicize that they beat Harvard in one random statistical category which basically affirms that Mormon kids want to go to a Mormon school I tip my hat to BYU. In fact, this is the greatest national news that has ever come out of BYU. Yo Max Hall how's your draft status taste?

  • Don't forget the cost
    March 10, 2010 10:49 p.m.

    I was accepted to Stanford and BYU. It was an easy decision in the end - $75,000 in debt versus no debt for the same bachelors degree.

    BYU's low tuition is a major differentiator.

  • silly
    March 10, 2010 10:36 p.m.

    Mormons who apply to a mormon school want to go to that school if they get accepted. This is such an achievement for BYU!!

  • Cougar
    March 10, 2010 10:29 p.m.

    Went to BYU and loved it. Transferred there from a small, eastern state school where I also loved it. THere are lots of schools where you can be happy and LDS, but it was easier at BYU. However, loved both, it was the right place at the right time for each one. By the way, BYU was academically the tougher school, by far. Great education, much less expensive. Don't knock it, and BYU grads will NOT be eaten up. If they made it through, they are worth their salt, as are those who make it through other prestigeous programs.

  • Former Cougar
    March 10, 2010 10:29 p.m.

    I graduated from BYU and had a great time. Four years ago my daughter was accepted to both BYU and Utah State. She choose the Aggies because they offered her a scholarship and BYU didn't. She had a wonderful time at USU. BYU is great, but it isn't the only place an LDS student can have a great experience. In many ways, USU is better.

  • re: anonomous
    March 10, 2010 10:20 p.m.

    Really? Name 10, with sources cited please. Or are you just some idiotic person who can't stand to see BYU #1 in a category above the likes of Harvard, MIT, etc? My guess is the latter. BYU is such an awesome place to go to school, but we don't expect anyone outside of it to ever understand. I graduate in 2006, and I know more about the world than many people who have never lived in Utah.

  • Re: Anonymous
    March 10, 2010 10:20 p.m.

    Utah is ahead of BYU according to who? You? Just another UTE homer that can't accept the fact that a nationally acclaimed magazine states fact based on data that they've gathered vs. your highly acclaimed Mr. Anonymous? Who the heck are you anyway?

    Oh, I know, another BYU hater that can't accept the fact that the UofU is 2nd fiddle in just about every category, except for having a Med School, that is just about all there is...Oh, I forgot about Women's Gymnastics...face the facts buddy the UofU just doesn't measure stated by US News and World report, and just about anyone else that thinks and uses objectivity...

  • RE: Alpine non-Cougar
    March 10, 2010 10:17 p.m.

    Of course you can have a good education anywhere as a Mormon. It is awesome for many, such as myself to go to BYU, but for many others it is better to go elsewhere. It actually really bugs me when people think that good Mormon kids "have" to go to BYU and I am one of those "good Mormon kids" who did go to BYU.

  • C.E. Winchester III
    March 10, 2010 10:13 p.m.

    re: Now watch all the BYU fans... | 8:23 p.m. March 10, 2010

    Didn't Dubya go to Harvard?

  • I chose the Y
    March 10, 2010 10:09 p.m.

    I could have gone to Columbia or to USU or to the UofU with a presidential scholarship, but I chose BYU with only a one year scholarship.

    BYU was the only place I wanted to be and I made the right decision for me. Might not have chose the right major but that is a seperate issue.

    It's a great place to be and I am glad I came. I'm also glad I graduate in less than 2 months!!

  • Bear Laker
    March 10, 2010 10:04 p.m.

    To Anonymus at 9:31. State your sources! It is easy to make a claim like that with no back up. Where is your proof. I say you can't prove it!

  • Impressed
    March 10, 2010 9:56 p.m.

    I'm in shock with this report! Good job BYU! Way to spank the country (including the Utes up north).

  • Um...
    March 10, 2010 9:52 p.m.

  • Way to go BYU!
    March 10, 2010 9:50 p.m.

    Way to earn the #1 spot! I grew up in the Provo/Orem area, attended preschool at BYU, summer programs at BYU, school field trips to BYU, and even church at BYU because of my dad's church calling...and then decided on Utah State to get away from the BYU thing. LOVED it!!! By then I knew how to find my own friends with worthy standards (of many different faiths) and didn't need the total-Mormon atmosphere. But I think BYU is great for kids who didn't grow up surrounded by other LDS peers and am happy they earned this #1 designation.

  • Alpine non-Cougar
    March 10, 2010 9:43 p.m.

    I have numerous relatives who are Cougars and they have had a great time at BYU. It is a good school with a unique student body.

    However, it is not the only place you can attend for a wonderful experience as a Mormon - not by a long shot. I attended a small Midwestern Lutheran liberal arts college and had a ball, as a Mormon. They were curious about me and I was curious about them. I sang in a campus choir and had the duty to sing in our beautiful Lutheran chapel every third Sunday - delightful!

    Some of the fun of my experience was because the school was 1/10th the size of BYU - in a small pond, you don't have to be great to participate in extracurricular activities, and my freshman year would have been such a bore without the athletics, the concerts and the other things I could BE IN and not just attend.

    Like many other places, BYU is a good school but not for everyone. If you are a Mormon who is happy and determined to live the life, there are hundreds of great places to go to college. Um-ya-ya! Go, Oles!

  • Anonymous
    March 10, 2010 9:31 p.m.

    Utah is ahead of byu in nearly every category in terms of good education.

    March 10, 2010 9:26 p.m.

    To "WOW": Why burn the energy required to actually type the words "WHO CARES!" if you don't actually care?! Seems logically inconsistent.

    Since there are BYU fans who are enjoying this little factoid, why does it get you so riled that they want to comment about it?

    Pop a chill pill, relax, and stop reading the comments if all the people who DO care cause you such apparent distress.

  • 1st choice
    March 10, 2010 9:24 p.m.

    They should also have asked students what their first choice of schools was. BYU would have ranked first in both Provo and up on the hill at the U too.

  • re: Most Popular
    March 10, 2010 9:00 p.m.

    That was a very uneducated comment, and I'm guessing you've never been to college.

    I'm LDS, and attended college where there were hardly any other LDS members... but made tons of friends and had fun.

    Somehow I wasn't eaten up???

  • WOW
    March 10, 2010 8:30 p.m.


  • Now watch all the BYU fans...
    March 10, 2010 8:23 p.m.

    Come out of the woodwork and start saying that BYU is not just the "harvard of the west"... but, they're actually better than harvard


  • To Most Popular?
    March 10, 2010 8:08 p.m.

    I was born and raised in California. I went to BYU, graduated and then moved back to California. Before I went to BYU, I went to Junior College for a year in Oakland and worked as a DJ at frat parties at UC Berkeley. I saw plenty of the real college world, dated lots of girls from the real college world, had all of the real college world I wanted. It got old, it became pointless. I am not into drinking alcohol, and the other extracurricular. There are plenty of us that just chose a more fulfilling college experience that the real world could never offer.

  • Shocking!
    March 10, 2010 8:08 p.m.

    LDS kids want to be with their peers? And this is news? Because a magazine ranked them? Wow, that IS news!

  • Most popular, huh?
    March 10, 2010 8:05 p.m.

    Cool. Way to go! Great for the popular kids. That's awesome, really. In news that matters to me, my daughter will go to either Vassar, Stanford, Brown, Loyola or Emory. Or maybe Northwestern. She's still undecided.

  • Swissh
    March 10, 2010 8:03 p.m.

    Most popular? is mostly right. Perhaps if I grew up in a high density LDS community, I could've had the "Mormon" experience in HS that most popular? implies. But I grew up in the East and I was tired of the lack of breadth and creativity in the parties and wanted to go to a place where simplicity and innocence were fun and not made fun of. I finished first in my class of 728 in HS and could've gone most anyway but in the end I only applied to BYU also. And it was every bit the experience that I could've hoped for but, as Anonymous points out, it too was what I made of it. [Eventually I did go to grad school in Boston; somehow even with my pitiful Florida education and my near inability to copy with real college, I spanked everyone there too!...humbly, of course.]

  • YAY
    March 10, 2010 8:01 p.m.

    You won an accolade. So?

  • True
    March 10, 2010 7:40 p.m.

    Very impressive.

  • RR
    March 10, 2010 7:38 p.m.

    No surprise here. Mormon kids want to go to a Mormon school...

  • Most popular?
    March 10, 2010 7:35 p.m.

    Shouldn't be a suprise. Mormon kids want to go to college with other mormons, the real college world would eat them up.

  • BYU Fan
    March 10, 2010 7:35 p.m.

    This article makes me happy! Of course, there is a strategy with how BYU does this (early applications), but nonetheless it is good to know that people commit to BYU. It is a good school, #71 in the nation. To think that #71 is picked over #1! Of course, that is actually quite common (some people pick #126 over #71, for example). Way to go BYU!

  • Anonymous
    March 10, 2010 7:31 p.m.

    "BYU is the only place you can go and have fun being a Mormon." That's a load of crap. I graduated from BYU but I could have gone to many different universities (even Utah) and had "fun being a Mormon." Don't get me wrong...BYU was a great experience, but life is what you make it, and you can have a great time anywhere in the country or world...and be Mormon.