Many have stumbled when trying to describe Rutgers University’s campuses in New Brunswick, Camden and Newark: Are they three schools or one?
Now, there’s an easier way: They are all Top 100 universities in the country.
All three campuses made huge jumps in the influential U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges ranking, which was released Monday morning.
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Rutgers-New Brunswick came in tied for No. 40 overall (a record high and possibly only the second time the school has cracked the Top 50). New Brunswick leaped 15 spots in the rankings.
The Newark and Camden campuses jumped even more — both moving into the Top 100 for the first time.
Rutgers-Newark came in at a tie for No. 82 overall (a jump of 33 spots from a year ago).
Rutgers-Camden came in at a tie for No. 98 (a jump of 29 spots).
Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway obviously was thrilled by the news.
“This is exciting news for all of us across Rutgers, because it signals that, in complementing our longstanding academic excellence, the work we are doing to make a Rutgers education more accessible while strengthening support for our remarkable, diverse students is being reflected in increasingly strong rankings,” he told ROI-NJ.
The biggest reason for the increase was an overhauled methodology, which put more weight on what New Jersey institutions take pride in doing, improving the social mobility and outcomes for graduating students.
U.S. News increased the importance on a school’s ability to graduate students from different backgrounds as well as graduating them with manageable debt and post-graduate success (things that matter most), while eliminating credit given for alumni contributions (which seemingly is a better measure of wealth).
Rutgers-New Brunswick not only jumped in the national rankings, it made a nice leap among its Big Ten brethren, as well.
Among schools in the now 14-school league, only Northwestern University (tie for No. 9), the University of Michigan (No. 21), University of Illinois (tie for No. 35) and University of Wisconsin (tie for No. 35) were higher. Last year, six schools placed higher.
Not surprisingly, the four schools joining the Big Ten next year (University of California-Los Angeles, University of Southern California, University of Washington and University of Oregon) all placed in the Top 100.
A look at where the top New Jersey schools ranked among national universities:
- No. 1: Princeton University
- No. 40 (tie): Rutgers University – New Brunswick (up 15 spots)
- No. 76 (tie): Stevens Institute of Technology (up 7 spots)
- No. 82 (tie): Rutgers University – Newark (up 33 spots)
- No. 86 (tie): New Jersey Institute of Technology (up 11 spots)
- No. 98 (tie): Rutgers University – Camden (up 29 spots)
- No. 151 (tie): Seton Hall University (down 14 spots)
- No. 159 (tie): Stockton University (up 23 spots)
- No. 163 (tie): Montclair State University (up 19 spots)
- No. 163 (tie): Rowan University (up 31 spots)