UMSL makes another big jump in US News ‘Best Colleges’ rankings, earning high marks for social mobility, value

A graduating student flashes a peace sign to the crowd during commencement

UMSL has climbed a combined 69 places in the U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings over the past three years. The university ranked No. 212 on the 2023 list and was first among Missouri universities and 75th nationally on the list of “Top Performers on Social Mobility.” (Photo by August Jennewein)

The University of Missouri–St. Louis is continuing its dramatic climb up the annual U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings.

UMSL, which had already made one of the nation’s biggest improvements, jumping a combined 42 places over the previous two years, climbed 27 more spots in the latest rankings released on Monday. UMSL now ranks No. 212 among national research universities on the 2023 list out of more than 1,800 colleges and universities nationwide.

UMSL also improved 11 places to rank No. 107 on the list of top public universities.

No. 75 in Top Performers for Social Mobility“The University of Missouri–St. Louis is truly on the rise, and we are proud the U.S. News & World Report rankings are reflective of our progress,” Chancellor Kristin Sobolik said. “Our faculty and staff continue to work hard to ensure that students get the high-quality education they deserve and will need to be successful as they launch their careers. We celebrate more than 2,800 students who earned degrees in the past year, and we have more work to do as we pursue our goal to make UMSL the top metropolitan research university in the country.”

UMSL continues to get high marks for helping students boost their economic future through a college degree.

The university was again ranked on the U.S. News list of “Top Performers on Social Mobility,” ranking first in the state and No. 75 nationally – an improvement of 25 places from last year’s rankings. The ranking is meant to highlight how well universities graduate students who receive federal Pell Grants.

Nearly 50% of UMSL students were Pell Grant-eligible in the 2021-22 academic year. Those recipients come from households whose family incomes are less than $50,000 annually. However, most Pell Grants are awarded to students with a total family income below $20,000, so a college degree can be instrumental in helping them increase their earning potential and improve their socioeconomic status.

Recognizing the university’s combination of quality and affordability, U.S. News also included UMSL on its list of Best Value Schools. UMSL ranked fourth in Missouri and No. 105 nationally.

UMSL appeared on U.S. News’ Best Colleges for Veterans list for the first time. To qualify, schools must be certified for the GI Bill and participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program or be a public institution. They also must enroll a minimum of 20 full-time and part-time undergraduate veterans and undergraduate active service members and be ranked in the top half of their 2023 Best Colleges ranking category.

Several academic programs also showed well in the rankings, including the undergraduate international business program, which ranked 18th nationally, marking the 19th time in the past 20 years that it finished in the Top 25.

UMSL ranked No. 110 in undergraduate engineering among universities without a doctoral program, and it ranked No. 112 for undergraduate nursing programs.

The university improved 26 places in the undergraduate business rankings, coming in at No. 164, tied for fourth in the state. It also ranked No. 255 in computer science.


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