2021 U.S News Best Colleges Report indicates steady growth and high rates of diversity

For the second year in a row, U.S. News and World Report’s ranking of best colleges recognizes Mount Mary for overall growth, and successful outcomes in graduating diverse and low-income students.

GrphETHNIC DIVERSITY: Mount Mary students have the highest probability of students at all regional colleges in the Midwest to encounter and study alongside people of different racial and ethnic backgrounds using a diversity index formula based on enrollment and ethnicity data.

ECONOMIC DIVERSITY: Mount Mary is listed second in the Midwest among regional universities indicating the percentage of undergraduates receiving federal Pell grants at the top-ranked schools. The report states: “U.S. News believes that Pell figures are the best available gauge of institutions’ relative commitment to access for all.”

#3 SOCIAL MOBILITY: Mount Mary is ranked third among Midwest regional universities in this category, which measures the success rate of graduating Pell students based upon six-year graduation rates.

#19 BEST VALUE: Affordability is measured by four indicators, the ratio of quality to price; the amount of need-based aid, the percent of need-based aid recipients awarded scholarships or grants; and the average discount. Mount Mary is #19 among regional universities in the Midwest.

BEST SCHOOLS: Mount Mary ranks among the top half of all public and private regional universities in the Midwest.

The three-year trend indicates steady growth in the overall ranking, from #78 among private and public regional universities in the Midwest in 2018-18 to #58 in 2019-20.

“This report indicates the institution’s commitment to continuous improvement,” said Director of Institutional Research LeeAnn Perkins. “Mount Mary is performing well and graduating students successfully, all while focusing on our mission of social justice.”

The recent release of the U.S. News and World Report ranking underscores the university’s focus on equity for students, regardless of economic or first-generation status, or ethnicity. Mount Mary’s six-year graduation rates aligns with the national average, regardless of student economic status. A study of student retention conducted this summer indicated that Pell-eligible and first-generation students are retained at the same rate as the overall student population.

“I believe these rankings are a solid indicator of the significant commitment of our faculty and staff to student success,” said Mount Mary President Christine Pharr, Ph.D. “I believe this is exactly what the Mount Mary mission calls us to do!”