Forbes list of top US public colleges in 2018

Every educational institution wants to make it to the Forbes list of top US colleges. The competition is severe and those schools that manage to get into the list can attract a huge number of students. The chances of getting the smartest students are higher if the number of applications is high.


Let’s have a look at the universities that managed to keep their position in the list and those which fell several spots lower or vice versa, improved their position.

The University of California, Berkeley is a public research university founded in 1868. It is regularly ranked as a top public educational institution that is notorious for the high level of student activism as well as research strength. It is no wonder that UC Berkeley ended up on the first place of Forbes list of top US public colleges. It also ranks No. 15 nationally and is a dream university for the students around the world.

California state can pride itself on having one of the oldest and most demanding university systems. It is quite natural that five more UC schools ended up in the list of 25 best institutions. The University of California, Los Angeles remained on the spot No. 8 and was named “Best Value School”. It also appeared to be the most applied-to institution in America.


The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor is famous for the academic excellence as well as for the athletic achievements of its students, so No. 2 spot fairly belongs to this institution.

Military schools were taking the top two spots on the list for quite a long time until 2018. This year five military academies were included to the list. The United States Military Academy in West Point, NY and the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD took No. 3 and No.4 spots respectively. A commitment to serve five years (at least) in the military is all that is needed for the opportunity to attend the school for free.

The prestigious University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA was placed on the No. 5 spot while the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO managed to remain at No. 6.

The College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, VA can be found on the spot No. 7. It is known for being a second-oldest higher education institution in America. It also prides itself on being the first US college, which became a university.

Among those universities that fell several spots on the list are the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, CT and the United States Merchant Marine Academy in King’s Point, NY.


The list of the best private institutions was dominated by northeast schools but top public colleges can be found in all different regions of the United States.

As for the newcomers, there are two of them. The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities in Minneapolis, MN takes No. 24 spot while Texas A&M University, College Station, TX closes the list by being No. 25.

Here is the full 2018 Forbes list of 25 top public colleges in the United States:

1.       University of California, Berkeley

2.       University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

3.       United States Military Academy

4.       United States Naval Academy

5.       University of Virginia

6.       United States Air Force Academy

7.       College of William & Mary

8.       University of California, Los Angeles

9.       University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

10.     United States Coast Guard Academy

11.     University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

12.     University of Maryland, College Park

13.     University of Florida

14.     United States Merchant Marine Academy

15.     University of Washington, Seattle

16.     University of Texas, Austin

17.     University of Wisconsin, Madison

18.     University of California, San Diego

19.     University of California, Santa Barbara

20.     Georgia Institute of Technology

21.     University of California, Davis

22.     University of California, Irvine

23.     University of Georgia

24.     University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

25.     Texas A&M University, College Station