SUU Jumps Rank above Utah Universities as Best in West

Published: September 09, 2014 | Read Time: 2 minutes

Marking considerable strides among the nation’s best regional universities, Southern Utah University’s undergraduate experience is gaining national attention from U.S. News and World Report, which ranked the Cedar City institution in the top tier of all universities across the West, at 58th — up 13 points from SUU’s 2015 standing.

This sizable jump in rank over just one year’s time, according to SUU Provost Brad Cook, head of the University’s academic affairs, “Is very unusual and is yet another indicator that the University continues to garner national attention and academic respect.”

With no intention of letting up, Cook sees ranking such as this as inspiration to continue on with confidence and a building momentum.

According to the report, schools in this category are evaluated on peer assessment, retention, class sizes, student-faculty ratios, ranking of its incoming freshman and graduation rates. In all this, Southern Utah University excels, ranked higher than any other regional college or university in the Utah System of Higher Education.

What’s more, beyond this particular ranking, Southern Utah University is second only to the University of Utah among all the state’s universities in the ultimate indicator of success: students’ persistence toward graduation. SUU touts the second highest six-year graduation rate in the state system.

While many schools have focused on enrollment as their ultimate barometer for success in recent years, Southern Utah University has done much to ensure its students continue to succeed long after they first walk through the door. According to Cook, retention and persistence through to graduation will remain a top priority in the years to come. Alongside such efforts, the University will strengthen recruitment initiatives in the coming years as word of the University’s standout success continues to spread.

U.S. News and World Report is the top source for higher education rankings in the nation. Rankings are organized according to a school’s mission and region in the country. Peer assessment, retention and graduation rates account for more than half of U.S. News and World Report’s evaluation.

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