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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review, one of the nation’s top education service and evaluation companies.

UT is mentioned for its affordability and “vibrant academic and social atmosphere” made up of “a broad range of students,” in the new 2010 edition of “The Best 371 Colleges.” UT is among only 15 percent of the nation’s four-year colleges and universities to be included in the guide.

The Princeton Review also noted that UT’s 20,000 undergraduate student population means “everyone can find their niche” and “the campus is full of interesting people who will really add to your life.”

“We’re always pleased when UT Knoxville is recognized for its quality and value,” said Chancellor Jimmy G. Cheek. “As the state’s top research university, UT offers students a broad range of opportunities to learn and grow so that they are well-prepared to compete in a global economy.”

The rankings are based on survey responses from more than 122,000 students at 371 schools, in such areas as academics, admissions selectivity and quality of life. The ratings are based largely on institutional data The Princeton Review collected during the 2008-09 academic year.

For the second year in a row, The Princeton Review also recognized UT Knoxville for its environmental friendliness. UT Knoxville scored 85 on the publication’s “green rating.” Make Orange Green, the campus environmental effort, has been recognized across the state and nation as one of the top campus environmental programs. UT Knoxville was the first university in the state to institute a student-initiated fee for the purchase of green power.

“It’s encouraging to see our continued success in campus sustainability through Make Orange Green be recognized in these rankings,” said Gordie Bennett, UT Knoxville sustainability manager. “Over the past year, leadership from our students, faculty and staff have all led to progress, especially in the area of energy conservation, where we have saved more than $1 million in energy costs over the last 12 months.”

Robert Franek, The Princeton Review’s senior vice president for publishing, said that schools are chosen primarily for their outstanding academics.

“We make our choices based on institutional data we gather about schools, feedback from students attending them and input from our staff who visited hundreds of colleges a year,” he said.

For more on The Princeton Review’s 2010 rankings, including details on how to order the new edition of “The 371 Best Colleges,” visit http://princetonreview.com/college-rankings.aspx.