U.S. News & World Report revealed its annual Best Colleges Rankings on Monday, and one D.C. university made a big leap.
Howard University clocked in at #80 on the publication's list of best national universities, making a colossal jump of 24 spots and marking the school's highest place on the list to date.
The university attributed its higher score this year to increases in its first-year student retention rate and graduation rate.
"We are delighted to see that our strategy to focus on student outcomes and fostering an environment that enhances the student's ability to stay on track toward on-time graduation are being recognized through the rankings of U.S. News and World Report," said Howard University President Wayne A. I. Frederick in a release.
Howard also ranked #2 on the publication's list of Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Here are the rankings of D.C.-area schools that made the national list:
- Georgetown University: 23
- University of Maryland College Park: 58
- The George Washington University: 66
- American University: 76
- Howard University: 80
- Gallaudet University: 124
- George Mason University: 143 (tie)
- The Catholic University of America: 143 (tie)
Schools were ranked in 17 categories, including first-year student retention rates, graduation rates, strength of the faculty and alumni giving. For the first time, the publication also factored in average federal student loan debt and the percentage of full-time undergraduates who took out federal loans.
Last year, Howard ranked #104. The year before that, Howard made a jump of 21 spots to come in at #89.