For the first time in a decade, non-military schools take the top two spots on FORBES’ list of top public colleges in the U.S. The University of California, Berkeley is the No. 1 public college and ranks No. 15 nationally. The California state university system’s oldest and most selective institution, founded in 1868, UC Berkeley is known for its student activism and research strength. Five more UC schools make the top 25 this year with the University of California, Los Angeles maintaining its No. 8 spot. UCLA was also named the No. 1 Best Value School by Forbes for 2018 with its yearly net price for in-state students at only $14,200. With more than 137,000 undergraduate applications for fall 2018, UCLA is the most applied-to school in the country.