Buffalo State placed highly in the social mobility category and as a top public college and a top regional university in rankings published by U.S. News and World Report this week.
In the U.S. News & World Report 2023 Best Colleges publication, Buffalo State tied for 34th place for social mobility and 40th place among top public colleges in the North, and ranked 113th in a tie among regional universities out of more than 181 institutions.
The magazine uses multiple measures to capture the various dimensions of academic quality at each college. They fall into nine broad areas: graduation and retention, social mobility, graduation rate performance, academic reputation, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving, and graduate indebtedness. U.S. News surveyed schools in the spring and summer of 2022.
“Buffalo State provides a pathway to a better life for students from a variety of circumstances, many of them difficult. When we see students complete their degrees and enter well-paying professions that make use of their talents and skills, we know we’ve done our jobs.”
The social mobility category measures how well schools graduate students who received federal Pell Grants—typically from households earning less than $50,000 annually. It looks at how six-year graduation rates of Pell grant recipients compare with those of students who did not receive Pell grants. The data were derived from enrollment numbers beginning in fall 2014 and 2015.
“Buffalo State’s continual high ranking on social mobility reflects the college’s effort to lift up low-income and first-generation students into the middle class and beyond,” said Buffalo State President Katherine Conway-Turner. “This is a part of the Buffalo State mission that I’m particularly proud of. The numbers tell you one thing; the stories faculty and staff members hear directly from our students tell you even more. Buffalo State provides a pathway to a better life for students from a variety of circumstances, many of them difficult. When we see students complete their degrees and enter well-paying professions that make use of their talents and skills, we know we’ve done our jobs.”
Buffalo State was previously recognized for its success in transforming the lives of economically disadvantaged students by CollegeNET. In its 2021 assessment released last December, the Portland, Oregon-based company ranked Buffalo State 34th out of 1,550 benchmarked schools in its Social Mobility Index (SMI) national rankings.
In its first five years of inclusion in the index, Buffalo State rose 100 positions, ranking 132nd in 2016, 102nd in 2017, 82nd in 2018, and 32nd in 2019. In 2021, it ranked 35th in the index.
Now in its 38th year, U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges assessed an all-time high of 1,500 U.S. bachelor’s degree-granting institutions on 17 measures of academic quality. To be ranked, institutions had to have regional accreditation; be included in Carnegie’s Basic Classification but not designated as a highly specialized school; deliver some undergraduate education in person; and enroll full-time first-year bachelor’s-degree-seeking students who graduate within six years.
The web version of U.S. News 2023 Best Colleges provides data-driven information and guidance to help prospective students and their families understand their higher education options. The news magazine will also publish most of the rankings with robust datasets in the 2023 guidebook, which is available for pre-publication order now.