The University of Northern Iowa held steady as the Midwest’s #2-ranked public regional university while its computer science program, veteran-friendliness and overall value ratings increased substantially in annual rankings published today by U.S. News & World Report. 

The magazine grades universities on student outcomes, graduation and student retention rates, faculty resources, and student excellence as well as surveys of higher education experts, among other factors. 

Monday’s rankings are the latest positive news for UNI, which recently announced its incoming freshman class size had increased for the second-straight year and its graduation rates were at all-time highs - nearly 20 percentage points higher than those of similar universities. UNI graduates also have the second-lowest average debt of graduates from all four-year colleges and universities in Iowa.

“As a university, we focus on working to continually improve our world-class, affordable educational experience while making the campus a welcoming place for all,” said President Mark A. Nook. “It’s gratifying to see the hard work our faculty, staff and students put into making the University of Northern Iowa an excellent campus recognized once again.”

Computer Science: The university’s lauded computer science program rose rapidly from last year (to #191 from #446) as talented faculty members continue to work closely with students on undergraduate research projects, and coursework that integrates the newest technologies. 

Best Colleges for Veterans - Midwest: UNI moved up to #9 in the rankings from #17, as U.S. News & World Report became the latest group to recognize the university’s efforts to welcome veterans to classrooms. 

Earlier this year, UNI was ranked among the top 20% of veteran-friendly colleges nationally by the comprehensive review service Military Friendly.  Last year Chiquita Loveless, UNI’s director for Military and Veteran Student Services, was recognized as a MercyOne Military Hero for her efforts in improving conditions for veterans on campus and in the community. She is currently serving in dual roles as Military and Veteran Student Services and UNI’s interim director of Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice . 

Best Value: UNI moved up slightly this year, ranking #56 on the list. Graduating students have the second-lowest average debt of graduates from all four-year colleges and universities in Iowa.

 

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