Friday, March 21, 2008

Colleges That Never Make the Final Four

Since I've been glued to my big screen TV for March Madness, I've noticed that the NCAA has some pretty good commercials about most of their student athletes going pro in something other than basketball. And while I was disappointed that my alma mater didn't make it into the NCAA tournament, there are plenty of good schools out there that don't even have a basketball team!

For example, Kettering University is ranked #1 for Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) in the 2008 edition of "America's Best Colleges Guide," published every year by "U.S. News & World Report." While not ranked in the Top 25 men's basketball teams by ESPN or the Associated Press, Kettering continues to be ranked in the Top 20 in the nation in the Undergraduate Engineering schools category, whose highest degree is a bachelor's or master's degree.

With eleven science, business and engineering majors as well as seven graduate programs, Kettering University (in Flint, Michigan) offers engineering co-op programs that combine theory taught in the classroom with the experience gained in the workplace. The mandatory work component of the program represents a substantial portion of each student's curriculum, and level of responsibility normally increases as the student completes advanced coursework. Unlike other co-op programs or internships, Kettering lets its students go pro in their freshman year, rotating every three months between school and their PAID co-op job. Kettering encourages students to stay with the same organization throughout the entire undergraduate education, allowing plenty of time to develop talents and skills for the future and increase each student's value to his or her co-op employer.

Now my loyal Roxiticus Desperate Housewives know that Rex and I disagree about the preferred college education. Rex is sold on small liberal arts colleges, while I stand behind the merits of what Rex calls "vo-tech" -- a college education that includes real skills that the student will be able to use once he or she enters the work force. If you side with Bree on this one, and you're more of a mathlete than an athlete, check out Kettering University: