UAlbany Once Again Ranked Among Top in the Nation for Social Mobility

Students dressed in academic regalia take a photo at SEFCU Arena during graduation.

ALBANY, N.Y. (Sept. 16, 2021) – The U.S. News & World Report “Best College Rankings” has once again recognized the University at Albany as a top performer in social mobility for 2022, tied at No. 33 nationally, within the top 10 percent of all institutions.

The annual ranking measures how well universities enroll and graduate students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds who receive Pell Grants. The vast majority of these federal grants are awarded to students whose adjusted gross family incomes are under $50,000.

U.S. News has consistently listed UAlbany among the top performers in social mobility since the ranking originated in 2019.

An Engine of Opportunity

The U.S. News ranking adds to UAlbany’s growing number of national accolades that focus on institutions serving economically disadvantaged students.

The Education Trust identified UAlbany last October as a leader in advancing racial equity among the nation’s 101 most selective public higher education institutions. It also recognized UAlbany as a national role model for Latinx and Black student success.

Washington Monthly has also consistently ranked UAlbany within its top 15 percent of national universities, which are based on contributions to public good. The New York Times listed UAlbany among the nation’s top 20 selective public colleges for offering students who come from poverty the greatest opportunity to achieve wealth in adulthood.

“As one of the five priorities in our strategic plan, UAlbany remains committed to creating pathways to excellence for all students, including those from economically disadvantaged backgrounds,” said UAlbany President Havidán Rodríguez. “This latest U.S. News social mobility ranking is further evidence that our University is serving as a powerful engine of opportunity.”

This fall, UAlbany welcomed its largest and most diverse group of first-year students in history. More than 3,000 students, from 21,000-plus applicants, joined the Class of 2025. Roughly 58 percent of freshmen identify as coming from an ethnically diverse background and 43.2 percent from underrepresented minorities. The new students come from 28 states and 31 countries.

UAlbany Rises in Forbes Rankings

In addition to U.S. News, UAlbany rose more than 100 spots in the Forbes “2021 America’s Top Colleges rankings.”

According to the methodology, rankings were based on a number of weighted factors, including alumni salary, debt, return on investment, graduation rate and the Forbes American Leaders list.

Forbes noted that it spent the pandemic year rethinking the way it evaluates the country’s top schools, and as a result, lower-cost public universities surged in the rankings, grabbing six of the top 25 spots.

See how UAlbany ranks in a variety of areas such as academic programs, and diversity, equity and inclusion.