Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


FAU’s rise to nationwide recognition

Florida Atlantic ranks highly on the Washington Monthly’s 2023 College Guide list among the top 50 universities in the nation.
Photo by Alex Liscio.

In Washington Monthly’s 2023 College Guide and Rankings Issue, Florida Atlantic University ranks No. 46 among America’s Best “National Universities,” rising 26 spots from last year. FAU is now ranked No. 13 on Washington Monthly’s “Best Bang for the Buck Rankings: Southeast” list, previously ranked No. 16.

Washington Monthly’s 2023 College Guide offers rankings to four-year schools: national universities, liberal arts colleges, baccalaureate colleges, and master’s universities. Classifying schools on their contributions to the public good and the country, measured with ratings based on social mobility, research, and public service.

FAU currently ranks No. 46 in the “National University” list, with an 8-year graduation rate of 61%. The three main categories of the list contain the social mobility rank of 26, the research rank of 174, and the service rank of 154.

James Capp, the associate vice president for strategic planning and student success at FAU’s provost office, believes that FAU is achieving an impactful college experience for its students. 

“As a large, diverse public research university, Florida Atlantic University offers students access to generational change. A recent study at FAU showed that most students – about 83% – move up one entire income bracket when they graduate from the university. We provide access for students to change their lives by ensuring they finish their degrees on time and enter the workforce with the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful,” said Capp.

With FAU’s high ranking in Washington Monthly’s “Best Bang for the Buck Rankings: Southeast,” Capp credits FAU’s beneficial financial aid wellness programs with students’ success from any socioeconomic background.

“This recognition largely comes from the fact that students with low-income backgrounds continue to make up around 40% of our bachelors-degree seeking student population, and these students graduate faster than the average student at FAU. The university accomplishes this feat by offering concierge financial aid services to all students,” said Capp.

Jae Rene, a junior communication and multimedia studies major, recognizes FAU’s deliverance in financial assistance to be able to experience a transformational academic education. 

“While my household is above the line of poverty here in the US, my parents didn’t have the means to fund my college education out-of-pocket, so they did the next best thing: pushing me academically to complete the IB Diploma Program [in High School], so that I may receive the Florida Academic Scholars Award which would cover my tuition 100%. Having the Bright Futures Scholarship, as well as the Pell Grant I receive from FAFSA, takes the majority, if not all, of the financial burden off of my shoulders as it relates to my college education, as I don’t have to work full-time as a means of covering my school expenses, nor do I have to take out any loans for my school” said Rene.

English professor Carla Thomas believes the improvement in FAU’s reputation is credited to funding in the research department.

“What improvement we’ve shown comes from increased funding for faculty and instructors to complete our research, as well as to add more research faculty, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate students,” said Thomas.

Freshman biology major Hallie Hiemstra argues that students should care about research that enriches their education with hands-on learning experiences.

“Students should care because their resources can help give them the information they need to get experience in certain subjects. It can also help them learn more so they can be prepared for future classes and their future career,” said Hiemstra.

Sophomore biochemistry major Jaelyn Hayes remarks on the university’s achievement in focusing on providing immersive and accessible opportunities to students. 

“The university has seemed to prioritize ‘doing,’ or rather, providing students ample opportunities to try out jobs related to their major before they graduate with said degree. I think that encourages students to do well in their classes or helps them figure out that the field may not be for them and to change course to something else,” said Hayes.

Michael Cook and Romina Franzese are Contributing Writers for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Michael Cook, News Editor
Michael is a junior multimedia journalism major with a minor in public relations. He's passionate about film and photography, and his journey into journalism began when he served as an editor for his high school yearbook. Now, he aspires to become a television news producer.
Erika Fletcher
Erika Fletcher, Lead Photographer
Erika is a senior majoring in multimedia studies with a minor in photography. She loves shooting sports and street photography and in her free time, she enjoys drawing, skateboarding, playing soccer, listening to music, and being with her friends and family. She joined the UP on a whim to make new friends and to get better at photography. In her time here, while not long, she's made connections and learned so much about herself already and can't wait to continue her journey with such great people.

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