On Feb. 23, the American City Business Journals (ACBJ) released their rankings for the top public colleges and universities throughout the United States. Rowan University ranked number 97 — the first time Rowan has been ranked within the top 100 schools on the list.
In 2015, Rowan was ranked number 112 on the list, which indicates Rowan has improved by 15 places within the past year. ACBJ creates their report based on various categories such as selectivity, prestige, advancement, resources and impact on the community. These are then translated into points and ranked accordingly.
Rowan University is one of five New Jersey schools ranked within the top 100. Rowan is only outpaced by Rutgers University, The College of New Jersey, Rutgers University – Newark, and Ramapo College of New Jersey.
Vice President of University Relations Joe Cardona explained that while many national rankings can often be very variable, this particular report does speak to Rowan’s growing strengths.
“Rowan University strives to be affordable, provide a quality education and be an academic driver,” Cardona said. “[ACBJ’s report] does demonstrate [to the average person] that our university is doing something right.”
Cardona explained that within the past decade, many reports have ranked Rowan increasingly higher on their lists. While Cardona believes a university cannot put too much weight on various reports, he believes reports which rank Rowan well are a public verification of progress.
While Rowan being ranked at 97 is an enormous accomplishment, it does not necessarily offer an indication of the university’s future progress.
“The report is not meant to tell the future. It’s supposed to look at what is happening today at our university,” Cardona said. “They’ve looked at us closely and what we’re doing is being recognized.”
Rowan has a heavy list of accolades which may have contributed to this ranking within the past five years. According to Cardona, the university increased their enrollment by 6,000 students, began construction of both a new Rohrer College of Business building and Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering building and doubled enrollment at Rowan University’s Camden campus.
“The pace of our campus is out of the ordinary. As a student it may be normal for you,” Cardona said. “But what’s going on with Rowan is far from normal.”
While moving up from 97 on the list is always a possibility, this is never a university’s direct goal. Cardona believes Rowan will continue to make changes and grow accordingly. The addition of more buildings on Rowan Boulevard and the addition of a medical center on Rowan’s West Campus will hopefully keep the public’s attention on Rowan University.
“We’re happy to be on that list. It recognizes the work we’ve done in the past decade and more specifically the past year,” Cardona said. “Students should be proud of that ranking.”