According to a national publication based in Washington D.C., Texas A&M University-Kingsville is now among the top 100 universities in the country.
The university came in at number 56 on Washington Monthly's September 2012 College Guide.
Last year, the university ranked 180 on the list, out of 281 universities. This year, it jumped 125 spots to number 56. This is the highest the university has ever been ranked on a national level.
"I just think it's great for a school like ours in South Texas, who doesn't get a lot of national press, to get recognition from a ranking like this," said Quinten Womack, a student regent of the TAMUK Board of Regents. "And I know that it's really going to help us, and it gives the students something to look at and say, well, what we're doing is really worth it."
In putting together its rankings, Washington Monthly measures three selected indicators that contribute to the public good: service, research and social mobility. The criteria are weighed equally.
Social mobility measures university efforts to recruit and graduate low-income students. While it ranked 56th overall, the university actually ranked third in the nation in the social mobility category.
"This reflects access and opportunity," TAMUK President Steve H. Tallant said. "It reflects the mission of this university, of being able to take in many students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds; to keep the cost of college down, and to educate them and graduate them in a timely manner."
As for the other two criteria in the ranking system, research measures university utilization of research expenditures, production of innovative scholarship and number of doctoral graduates; and service measures how effectively a university emboldens students to give back to their communities and their countries after graduation, including through the ROTC and the Peace Corps.
If you're curious who came in first, it was University of California, San Diego. Harvard came in at 11. If you'd like to see the complete list, click here.
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