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an aerial view of Jacksonville University
An aerial view of Jacksonville University

Jacksonville University celebrates back-to-back years of highest rankings in school history

For the second year in a row, Jacksonville University secured its place among the top 30 regional schools on U.S. News & World Report’s list of Best Colleges, a prestigious annual ranking of the best colleges and universities throughout the country.  

Out of 134 universities, Jacksonville University was ranked 29th overall on the list of Best Regional Universities in the South, which includes a 10-point overall improvement over last year’s larger list of schools.

“We are pleased to see that our overall score, which U.S. News & World Report uses to determine our ranking, has improved by 10 points (from 55 to 65), reflecting improvement across several key indicators that focus primarily on student success before and after graduation,” said Executive Director of Institutional Analytics, Effectiveness and Strategic Planning Will Miller. “With many U.S. News indicators utilizing multi-year rolling averages, we expect to continue ascending in this ranking as our student success metrics also continue to climb.”

U.S. News & World Report again named Jacksonville University one of the Best Value Schools in the South, elevating its position to #37 over last year’s rank of #38. The University also held its Top 20 position on the list of Best Colleges for Veterans (#16). 

This fall, the University is seeing encouraging trends in student enrollment, despite elevated precautions for the coronavirus and the worst economic recession since the Great Depression. Jacksonville University welcomed the largest incoming freshman class in school history.  

Meanwhile, the University continues moving forward on a path of continuous improvement. In 2020, Jacksonville University leadership approved a comprehensive strategic plan designed to position the University for accelerated growth and improvement. The plan, which is expected to formally launch in 2021, represents months of collaborative meetings and collective input from all areas of campus, including the faculty, staff, Board of Trustees, and student body. 

“The strategic plan focuses on holistic wellness and success for our entire campus community, but especially our students,” said Miller. “Our continued emphasis on improving retention and completion rates among all of our students aligns with U.S. News’ growing emphasis on student outcomes and inclusion.”

U.S. News & World Report has ranked Jacksonville University among the top regional colleges or universities in the South each year since 2004. U.S. News ranked nearly 1,400 colleges and universities for the 36th edition of the rankings. To calculate the top schools, U.S. News focuses on academic quality and places emphasis on outcome measures – including graduation rates, retention rates and social mobility.