For the third time since September, a national publication has praised the return on investment that Niagara University offers to students.

In the fall, NU was one of 15 regional institutions included on U.S. News & World Report’s list of “Great Schools, Great Prices” and ranked as the best value among Buffalo-Niagara institutions by Money magazine.

This week, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance featured NU on its 2017 list of the “Top 100 Best Private University Values” and “Top 300 Best College Values.”

Introduced in 1998, the Kiplinger rankings now combine public schools, private universities and private liberal arts colleges into a single, comprehensive list. Kiplinger also ranked the top 100 best values in each category.

Niagara earned the No. 82 spot on the magazine’s list of 100 best values among private universities, ahead of every other private institution in Western New York.

The Rev. James J. Maher, C.M., has placed a pronounced emphasis on affordability, accessibility and outcomes throughout his Niagara University presidency. Last year alone, Niagara awarded more than $43 million in grants and scholarships to undergraduate students, while 96 percent of new alumni were employed or enrolled in graduate school within one year of graduation.

“It’s clear based on the recent accolades that our institutional prioritizations on affordability, accessibility and graduate outcomes are bearing fruit, thanks largely to the incredible work of our faculty, staff and administrators,” said Father Maher. “At Niagara, we are committed to being accountable to our students and their families by pairing young people with exceptional faculty members who serve as mentors in an excellent, supportive academic and social environment. The incredible success that our alumni enjoy after graduation is a testament to the power of a Niagara University education.”

Kiplinger’s quality measures, which are weighted more heavily than cost, include the admission rate, the percentage of students who return for sophomore year, the student-faculty ratio and the four-year graduation rate. Cost criteria include sticker price, financial aid and average debt at graduation. Unlike other rankings, which include subjective criteria in their assessments, Kiplinger restricts its analysis to measurable standards of academic quality and affordability.

“With our rankings, which weigh affordability alongside academic quality, our goal is to help students and their parents understand what’s really worth the price,” said Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. “While some may have ranked higher than others, all 300 schools on the list are of extraordinary value, being chosen out of a universe of 1,200.”

At, visitors have access to the “Find the Best College for You” tool and other tools that let readers sort by admission rate, average debt at graduation and other criteria for all schools, plus in-state and out-of-state cost for public universities.

The complete rankings are now available online at and will appear in print in the February 2017 issue of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

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