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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is ranked among the best colleges in America by Money Magazine. The university received a four-star rating out of five in Money’s 2023 Best Colleges rankings. It is the only public university in Tennessee to make the list.

The goal of Money’s rating system is to help prospective students and their families find affordable colleges that offer a quality education.

To compile its rankings, Money started with more than 2,400 four-year public and private nonprofit colleges and universities across the country. It narrowed down the list to 736 schools that meet four criteria:

  • At least 500 undergraduate students
  • Sufficient reliable data to be analyzed
  • No signs of financial distress
  • A graduation rate at or above the median for its institutional category or an adjusted rate in the top 25% overall

Money ranked qualifying colleges on 26 factors in three categories: quality of education, affordability and student outcomes, which include earnings after graduation and return on investment.

As Money highlighted, UT outcomes are positive for students following graduation. Six months after commencement, 90% of UT’s 2022 graduates had found employment or decided to continue their education. Money also recognized the university for its affordability. UT paid more than $86 million in aid to fall 2022 first-year students.


Lisa Leko (865-974-8698,