University of Utah

Okay, BYU fan, time for the toughest quiz of the season, er, semester. No grading on a curve, either. Ready? Here goes: What do you admire most about Utah as a school? Let's strip away all that fanly fan bluster, and the pain you felt the last time the Utes beat the Cougars in football, and consider for a minute the national and international reputations of one of the state's flagship institutions, for the Wasatch Front and beyond and some of the similarities BYU and the U. share. Heck, the U. provides a lot of direct benefit for U. grads. Need an example? OK, try this: Did you know 299 of the 2,134 students pursuing a graduate degree at the U. right now are BYU grads? Here are five reasons a BYU fan can respect the U.

University of Utah

The U. is ranked No. 3 for green power on campus by no less an authority than the Environmental Protection Agency, which estimated that 31 percent of Utah's electricity on campus comes from green power.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

The U. is listed 79th in the International Academic Ranking of Universities by the Center for World-Class Universities at Shanghai Jiao Tong University. The center grades based on the number of highly cited researchers a university has, graduates who receieved Nobel Prize and the number of papers written for academic journals and listed in the Citation Index-Expanded (SCIE) and Social Science Citation Index (SSCI).

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Both Utah's undergraduate and graduate accounting programs placed in the Public Accounting Report's Top 25.

Michael Brandy, Deseret News archives

The U. is the nation's best school at spinning the technology and innovation generated in campus labs into startup companies, according to the annual report of the Association of University Technology Managers. More than 180 companies have been founded through USTAR research at the U., which is not only good for the university's recruiting but also for the state's economy. A study by the U.'s business school this year found that campus startup companies have a major impact statewide. Those companies directly or indirectly generated 15,767 jobs, $754.5 million in personal income and $76.6 million in tax revenue in 2009, according to the study.

Some of the most notable companies started by U. grads include Pixar, Adobe Systems and Marriott International.

Michael Brandy, Deseret News archives

Utah has the only medical school in the state. Not only is it the only one offered in Utah, and one of the graduate programs populated by many BYU alums — 14 percent, to be exact — but it was also ranked No. 1 in healthcare by the University Healthsystem Consortium. "The Consortium's quality ranking is one of the most rigorous and thorough rankings in the country," said Lorris Betz, U. Health Care CEO and senior vice president for the University's Health Sciences, in a press release. Utah also boasts the No. 5 family medicine program, No. 8 nursing school and No. 5 pharmacy program. Also, Utah professor Dr. Mario R. Capecchi won a Nobel Prize in 2007 for his work on a gene targeting technique to help discover diseases in animals and humans.