The Berkshire Eagle   reports two Northern Berkshire colleges have landed in the top tiers of U.S. News & World Report's rankings of colleges and universities released on Monday.

For the second consecutive year, the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts has been ranked No. 7 on the organization's list of top public colleges. It also made the list of the Top National Liberal Arts colleges, coming in at No. 140.

Williams College was ranked No. 1 on the list of Top National Liberal Arts colleges.

This is the highest U.S. News & World Report ranking MCLA has earned. The college has appeared on the organization's list of top public colleges for seven of the last nine years. Williams College frequently ranks in the top 10 on the National Liberal Arts colleges list.

MCLA President James F. Birge attributed much of the credit to the high quality of the faculty, although he pointed out that the administrators and other staff members provide a fully rounded experience that contributes to students' success.

He noted that at the top of the list of public colleges and universities are the military service academies, such as the United States Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., or the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md.


MCLA also appears on a new U.S. News & World Report list: Top Performers on Social Mobility. This list measures how well schools graduate students who receive Federal Pell Grants, which are typically awarded to students whose families make less than $50,000.

Williams College officials declined to comment, as their policy does not allow commentary on college rankings.

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