International students and their families sometimes wrongly assume that if they haven't heard about a college or university, it must be a bad university. That is like saying if you have not heard about a city somewhere in the world, it must be a terrible city. The United States has close to 3500 colleges and universities. Even people born and brought up in the US often don't know or have not heard about all the 3500 institutions. It doesn't mean they are bad or not worth getting to know. It simply means YOU have not heard about it.
London, Paris, New York and a few other cities in this league are like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and MIT. Everyone (almost everyone) has heard about these cities and these institutions. But there are many great places in the world (that is why travel magazines sell so well!) that no one has heard about and yet are great treasures. This is true for universities as well.
Advice: Don't disregard a university because you have not heard about it. Research it and then decide what you want to do! The most important lesson for those interested in study abroad is to keep an open mind!
Dr. Uma Gupta is the President of USAsiaEdu. She blogs about study abroad and international students.