UC Riverside Ranked Ninth in 2012 Washington Monthly College Survey

School receives high marks for public service for the second consecutive year

replanting a campus flower bed

Students and staff turned out with UC Riverside Chancellor Timothy P. White (center, in blue) for a campus beautification project. Office of Strategic Communications

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) — In recognition of a commitment to public service and educational access for low- and middle-income students, the University of California, Riverside has been ranked ninth overall among national universities and first in student service participation in the annual 2012 Washington Monthly’s College Ranking survey.

Now in its eighth year, the survey includes rankings for 281 American universities and rates them based upon their contribution to the public good in the categories of:

  • Social mobility  —  recruiting and graduating low-income students
  • Research  —  producing cutting-edge scholarship and Ph.Ds
  • Service  —  encouraging students to give something back to their country

The survey considers each of the categories equally and rewards institutions for excellence in each, rather than rewarding an exceptionally high focus in just one.

college player playing basketball with youngster

UC Riverside men’s basketball player Chris Harriel works with a youngster at the YMCA National Night Out at the Riverside YMCA on August 7, 2012. Photo by Carlos Puma

“Since 2005, the Washington Monthly has published rankings that pose a different question: What are colleges doing for the country?” reads an introduction to the report by the magazine’s editors. “(H)igher education matters to more than just the people who attend.”

UC Riverside scored well across the board, finishing with a total of 82 points out of a possible 100, but the highlight was a first-overall finish in the category of “Service participation and hours served” and second overall in “Federal work-study funds spent on service.” It is the second consecutive year in which UCR has finished first in service, while the service funding rank marked an improvement of one spot. Overall, it marked the school’s second consecutive appearance in the top-10. In 2011, UCR finished fifth with a total of 85 points.

“We are proud of the tradition of service here at UC Riverside,” Chancellor Timothy P. White said. “Many of our students come from low- and middle-income families and realize the importance of giving back to the community through service. Their efforts are an example of how UCR students are living the promise, building habits that will last a lifetime and setting examples for generations to come.”

students painting and taping mobile home

Students from the UCR School of Business Administration helped to make-over four mobile homes as part of Habitat for Humanity Riverside’s Helping Hands project in the fall of 2011. Photo by Caleb Jasso

The ranking is the latest in a series of awards that recognize UCR students’ commitment to public service. In March, UC Riverside was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll With Distinction.

The University of California, San Diego finished first overall with UC Berkeley placing fifth and UCLA sixth. UC Santa Barbara was 14th and UC Davis 17th.

“It doesn’t surprise me at all to find six University of California schools among the top 20,” White said. “It is another great example of the measurable public good that the university brings to the people of the state of California and it demonstrates the system-wide return on that investment.”

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