CORVALLIS, Ore. - An online service that provides information about universities to prospective students has tabbed Oregon State University number five in the country when it comes to friendliest students on campus.

The rating service, called CampusDirt, is a product of

OSU's high ranking came as no surprise to Michele Sandlin, the university's director of admissions.

"For the past several years, the most consistent thing we hear repeated from prospective students - and their parents - is how friendly the OSU campus is," Sandlin said. "We hear constantly from people about how friendly our students, faculty and staff are.

"That's us," she said with a laugh, "the friendly campus."

Ahead of OSU on the list are, in order: Brigham Young-Idaho, American Intercontinental University, Texas A&M and Lee University.

CampusDirt also lists several other top 10 categories, including Most Diverse Campus (University of Maryland); Most Wired Campus (Bentley College); Safest Campus (U.S. Naval Academy); Best Party Schools (University of Dayton); Most School Spirit (Louisiana State University); and Nicest Campus (Elon University). No Oregon universities made the other top 10 lists.

Jill Schuster, OSU's director of marketing, pointed out that the service ranked OSU high in several areas, including the quality of faculty, athletics, and computing and technical support, all of which received A-minus grades.

"Tens of thousands of current students and recent graduates from various universities volunteer to participate in the survey, which admittedly is not scientific," Schuster said. "But they take the time to go in and provide feedback about their university, so it is particularly encouraging that our students think highly of us in those areas," Schuster said. "We also received B-plus rankings in student life, clubs, food services, and Greek life."

OSU's lowest ranking: A C-minus in parking.

"There probably isn't a campus in America where students are happy with the parking," Schuster pointed out.

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Jill Schuster, 541-737-4668