Newswise — Misericordia University has been named one of the best colleges and universities in the Northeast, according to The Princeton Review. The New York City-based education services company selected Misericordia as one of 218 institutions it recommends in its "Best in the Northeast'' section of its PrincetonReview.com feature, "2010 Best Colleges Region by Region.''

The Princeton Review says Misericordia University "provides a solid education for the outside world while giving excellent opportunities for service.'' Founded and sponsored by the Religious Sisters of Mercy in 1924, the student survey says "students really do perform a lot of community service'' which the school "encourages.'' MU students are also "very serious about their studies,'' as the academics are also "very high level and all the instructors help you to think above and beyond what is in the books.''

Misericordia "has very good health major programs'' and students in nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, medical imaging and sonography "are known to have great graduation rates" and good prospects for "jobs after graduation.'' The university also "has a great reputation in the field of education'' and "the best communications department in the area.''

Known for providing "personal'' attention, Misericordia students say "teachers are always available for students'' and "are always willing to help you in and out of the classroom.'' One undergraduate student summed up his MU experience by saying: "It's been hard work, but I know I'm getting a good education and a reputable degree,'' according to The Princeton Review survey.

The 80-queston Princeton Review survey asked students to rate their own schools on several issues — from the accessibility of their professors to the quality of campus food — and answer questions about themselves, their fellow students and their campus life. Actual comments from surveyed students pepper each Princeton Review college profile on its website and in the book.

Some of the student comments in the profile on Misericordia University say: Life at Misericordia is "pretty good.'' There's "always something taking place on campus because Student Activities brings in musicians, comedians, bands and game shows'' and "resident assistants plan different programs.''

MU's profile also states that its small, 124-acre campus means students tend to know each other "not just by face but by name, and they all seem to get along with each other. Most students "are very nice and sociable'' and "everyone accepts everyone.''

The 218 colleges The Princeton Review chose for its "Best in the Northeast'' website designations and "The Best Northeastern Colleges:2010 Edition'' book are located in 11 states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont, and the District of Columbia. On its website, "2010 Best Colleges Region by Region'' feature, The Princeton Review also designated 158 colleges in the Midwest, 123 in the West and 141 in the Southeast as regional best colleges. The 640 colleges named regional bests represent about 25 percent of the nation's 2,500 four-year colleges.

"We chose Misericordia University and the other terrific schools we recommend as our 'regional best' colleges primarily for their excellent academic programs,'' said Robert Franek, vice president of publishing for The Princeton Review. "We also work to have our roster of 'regional best' colleges feature a range of institutions by size, selectivity, character and locale.

"We choose the schools based on institutional data we college from several hundred schools in each region, our visits to schools over the years and the opinions of independent and high school-based college advisors whose recommendations we invite. We also take into account what each school's customers — their students — report to us about their campus experiences,'' Franek added.

Misericordia is also ranked in the Best Universities, Master's North, classification of U.S. News & World Report's 2007-08 America's Best Colleges. MU also does well in the prestigious National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), which surveys freshmen and seniors regarding important measures of quality undergraduate education. It determines how engaged students are in specific activities, such as applying theories or concepts to practical problems, participating in internships or participating in a community-based project as part of course work.

More than 528 colleges participated in the most recent NSSE. Misericordia scored in the top 10 percent of all NSSE schools nationally in providing a supportive campus environment and 97 percent of Misericordia's first-year students rated their overall experience as good or excellent.

For more information about Misericordia University, please call (570) 674-6400 or log on to www.misericordia.edu.

Founded and Sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy in 1924, Misericordia University is Luzerne County's first four-year college and offers 32 undergraduate, graduate and doctorate majors in three colleges in full and part-time formats.

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