University of Arkansas Consistently Ranked Among Nation's Best Public Universities

University of Arkansas Consistently Ranked Among Nation's Best Public Universities
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The University of Arkansas continues to set records in the areas that are most important to advancing its public, land-grant mission.  A few examples include:

  • Record number of Arkansans enrolled
  • Record number of Arkansans in the incoming class
  • Record levels of scholarships for Arkansans
  • Record 98% of Arkansans who applied received a scholarship or other financial support last year
  • Record overall enrollment
  • Record incoming high school GPA (3.79)
  • Record $98.6 million in scholarships and grants awarded
  • Record $184 million in research expenditures (fiscal year 2022)

These records don’t include the fact that the university’s first-year retention rate is again above 85% and the six-year graduation rate is again above 69% — the first time in U of A history to hit these important milestones in three consecutive years. According to the preliminary 11th day report, the university’s first-year retention rate has increased to 86.5%, up nearly 1% from last year’s 11th day numbers, while the six-year graduation rate has increased almost half a percent to 69.6%. These are both university records for a non-COVID/non-grade-adjusted year.

This success means more U of A graduates are entering the workforce, growing the university’s annual economic impact to the state of Arkansas. Other exciting examples of the university’s progress include:

  • Institute of Integrative and Innovative Research breakthroughs in prosthetics and a new collaboration with Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
  • Plans to open the I³R facility in late 2024.
  • Being uniquely positioned to lead the semiconductor economy.
  • Groundbreaking for a one-of-a-kind semiconductor manufacturing facility.
  • Construction starting on the Anthony Timberlands Center.
  • Arkansas Transfer Achievement Scholarship delivering $2.5 million in tuition savings.
  • Increased scholarship funding for Arkansas students by $6 million since 2019.

The U of A’s position as one of the nation’s best public universities and best values is consistently recognized in higher education rankings such as those conducted by U.S. News & World Report, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal.

In the latest U.S. News Best Colleges report, which includes 435 national universities, the U of A is 96th among public institutions, tied with four others including Washington State University. There are nearly 6,000 colleges and universities in the U.S. including fewer than 4,000 that are degree-granting postsecondary institutions.

In its most recent report, U.S. News removed five ranking factors totaling 18% of the previous edition’s rankings including alumni giving rate, previously 3% of the total methodology. Alumni giving has long been a strength of the University of Arkansas. 

Despite the changes, the university improved in several categories including best value, faculty resources and social mobility, which includes graduation rates for students receiving Pell grants and other federal loans for first-generation students. The U of A was again recognized among the nation’s Best Colleges for Veterans. The U of A graduation rate for Pell students (54%), which has remained relatively flat from last year, is an area the university has targeted for improvement moving forward.

Several U of A academic programs were also recognized among the nation’s best including supply chain management as well as the undergraduate programs in business, economics, computer science, engineering, nursing and psychology.

The full rankings of this year's U.S. News Best Colleges can be found on the U.S. News & World Report website.



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