On Campus

[UPDATED] UWEC Near Top of Multiple New Rankings

university rated highly for academics, LGBTQ climate, while city gets high marks for ‘livability’

V1 Staff |

COOL CAMPUS, COOL CITY. UW-Eau Claire students like these have it made – at least according to some recently released rankings about the university and the city around it. (UWEC photo)
COOL CAMPUS, COOL CITY. UW-Eau Claire students like these pretty much have it made – at least according to some recently released rankings about the university and the city around it. (UWEC photo)

If you’re looking for a college that ranks highly among its regional peers, is located in an awesome city, and is friendly to LGBTQ folks, you can’t do much better than UW-Eau Claire. That’s one conclusion to drawn from a recent slew of rankings earned by Eau Claire’s own state university. Here’s a brief rundown:

• For the 27th straight year, UWEC has landed on the list of top public regional universities in the Midwest published by U.S. News & World Report. As it did last year, UWEC was No. 8 in the rankings of its public peers, while it was No. 41 among 165 public and private colleges. UWEC tied with the University of Minnesota-Duluth and Winona State University at No. 8, while UW-Stout in Menomonie landed at No. 15. According to a UWEC media release, “The rankings are based on criteria that includes peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate performance, and alumni giving.”

• Meanwhile, in August the financial technology firm SmartAsset ranked Eau Claire No. 2 on its list of the Most Livable College towns in the nation. (No. 1 was Chapel Hill, North Carolina.) SmartAsset based its assessment on factors such as median income, housing costs, concentration of restaurants and entertainment, commute times, unemployment, and crime.

• For the fifth consecutive year, UWEC has earned a perfect five-star rating on the Campus Pride Index and again is on the “Best of the Best” list from the preeminent resource for tracking LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs, and practices in higher education.

• In the 2021 edition of the Forbes magazine America’s Top College rankings, UWEC was the top-ranked comprehensive public university in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa. Across those states, the only public universities that ranked higher were the much larger UW-Madison, the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, the University of Iowa, and Iowa State University. UWEC ranked No. 41 among all public and private universities in the Midwest and No. 122 among public universities nationwide. (Find out more here.)

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