Oakland, CA—September 10, 2019
Mills College is being recognized by U.S. News & World Report’s 2020 Best Colleges Guide in two new categories: Best Innovative Colleges and Best Social Mobility. We maintained our high ranking as one of the Best Value Colleges while also receiving accolades for Best Undergraduate Teaching, and we are honored to receive Best Regional Universities in the West for the 12th consecutive year.
Here’s a quick look at the rankings and what they mean:
Mills ranked #3 in Best Value Colleges in the West
According to U.S. News & World Report, the calculation used to determine a school's academic quality, as indicated by its 2020 U.S. News Best Colleges ranking, was combined with the 2018-19 net cost of attendance for a student who received the average level of need-based financial aid. The higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal. Only schools ranked in or near the top half of their categories are included because U.S. News considers the most significant values to be among colleges that are above average academically.
Mills ranked #4 in Most Innovative Schools in the West
In spring 2019, U.S. News asked top college officials to identify institutions in their Best Colleges ranking category that are making the most innovative improvements in terms of curriculum, faculty, students, campus life, technology or facilities. The Most Innovative Schools ranking is based solely on the top academics' responses to this question, which was a separate section of the annual 2019 peer-assessment survey. This ranking enables top college officials to pick schools that the public should be watching because of the cutting-edge changes the colleges are making on their campuses.
Mills Ranked #5 for Best Regional Universities
In the 2020 edition of Best Colleges, Mills received an overall rating of 75 out of 100. The student-faculty ratio at Mills is 11:1 and it was noted that 65.5 percent of classes at Mills had fewer than 20 students. The average freshman retention rate, an indicator of student satisfaction, was 78 percent.
Of the many factors weighed in determining the rankings, the key measures of quality are graduation and retention rates, peer assessment, student acceptance rate, graduation rate, and the percent of first-year students in the top 25 percent of their high school graduating classes.
“We are delighted that Mills continues to be ranked among the best colleges in the West by U.S. News & World Report. And, we are especially pleased that the report is shining the spotlight on our exceptional faculty this year,” says Mills College President Elizabeth L. Hillman, “Our goal is to provide students of all backgrounds a life-changing, top-tier education that prepares them to be leaders in their careers and communities.”
Mills ranked #9 in Best Undergraduate Teaching in the West
The U.S. News rankings for Best Undergraduate Teaching focus on schools where faculty and administrators are committed to teaching undergraduate students in a high-quality manner. College presidents, provosts, and admissions deans who participated in the annual U.S. News peer-assessment survey were asked to nominate up to 15 schools in their Best Colleges ranking category with strength in undergraduate teaching.
Mills is being recognized for its dynamic environment that supports intellectual exploration and a thoughtful approach to life. Working closely with renowned faculty members and diverse students in intimate, collaborative classes, Mills students explore, debate, and challenge conventional thinking—both inside and outside the classroom. Students work with faculty members on meaningful real-world projects and engage with distinguished professors, thinkers, writers, and artists.
Mills ranked #11 for Social Mobility in the West
U.S. News & World Report ranked Mills as a top performer on Social Mobility. Economically disadvantaged students are less likely than others to finish college, even when controlling for other characteristics. U.S. News finds that Mills College is having more success than others at advancing social mobility by enrolling and graduating a significant proportion of historically underserved students, including Pell Grant recipients. The vast majority of these federal grants are awarded to students whose adjusted gross family incomes are under $50,000.
About Mills College:
Located in Oakland, California, in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, Mills College is a nationally renowned independent liberal arts college for women and gender non-binary students, with graduate programs for all genders. Ranked one of the top-tier regional universities in the West by U.S. News & World Report, Mills is also recognized as one of the Best 385 Colleges in the nation by The Princeton Review. Since 1852, we’ve been empowering students to become creative, independent thinkers and leaders who take and inspire action. Take a virtual tour.
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