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MSMU No. 1 in Social Mobility in Best Colleges List

Mount Saint Mary’s University No. 1 in Social Mobility With Four Other Top-20 Rankings from U.S News & World Report’s 2021 “Best Colleges” List

September 29, 2020

Mount Saint Mary’s University continues to rack up solid rankings this month with the announcement of the 36th annual U.S. News & World Report 2021 Best Colleges list. The Mount’s rankings are in the category of universities in the western region. This year’s rankings are below.

#1 Social Mobility

#10 Undergraduate Teaching

#10 Best Colleges for Veterans

#16 Best Overall, tie

#18 Best Value

The West Regional University category includes 127 universities from 15 states and Guam. To be considered in the national universities category, an institution must offer a full range of programs for all three types of degrees and to place an emphasis on groundbreaking research.

A serene low-light view at the Chalon campus.
A serene low-light view at the Chalon campus.

“We are grateful and proud to have received recognition from such a respected organization,” says Ann McElaney-Johnson, PhD, president of Mount Saint Mary’s. “We are pleased to receive two No. 10 rankings in areas in which we were unranked last year, which demonstrates our continuous efforts to provide a superior academic environment for our students.”

The factors that are used to calculate rankings are as follows:


The indicator comes from a university’s success at retaining and graduating students within six years.

Faculty Resources

The study examined class size, faculty salary , faculty with the highest degree in their fields , student-faculty ratio ) and proportion of faculty who are full time.

Expert Opinion

Data collected by U.S. News from 2019 and 2020 peer assessment surveys examined a two-year weighted average of ratings from top academics – presidents, provosts and deans of admissions.

Financial Resources

The study calculated the average spending per student on instruction, research, student services and related educational expenditures for the 2018 and 2019 fiscal years.

Student Excellence

Incoming first-year students’ grades (proportion of students who were in the top quarter of their high school graduating class) and test scores were examined.

Alumni Giving

The average percentage of living alumni with bachelor's degrees who gave to their school during 2017-2018 and 2018-2019.

College rankings by U.S. News & World Report can assist high school applicants, college transfer students and their parents better understand their options. In addition to their online results, U.S. News will publish a “Best Colleges Guidebook” that will be available in bookstores on October 27.