By: Yitzchak Carroll and Avi Hirsch | News  | 

YU Drops to 24-year Low in U.S. News and World Report Rankings

Yeshiva University dropped to 97th place in this year’s U.S. News and World Report ranking of colleges across the nation, which was released on Sept. 9. The rating marks a 24-year low, and a decline from the 80th place YU secured in last year’s ranking report. YU is tied with six other universities in 97th place.

YU placed particularly low in the “Student Excellence” category, which accounts for 10 percent of the overall ranking. Among national universities, YU ranked 139th for student excellence, a drop of 17 points from last year’s 122nd. According to U.S. News, the Student Excellence ranking is based on students’ standardized test scores and high school class standing.

In contrast, YU placed particularly well in “Alumni Giving,” ranking 60th overall with an average alumni giving rate of just over 15 percent. This category reflects the “average percentage of living alumni with bachelor's degrees who gave to their school during 2016-2017 and 2017-2018.” Alumni Giving constitutes 5 percent of the overall ranking.

The other categories that affect a school’s overall ranking are “Outcomes” (35 percent), which takes into account such information as graduation rates and social mobility; “Faculty Resources” (20 percent), which includes class sizes and faculty salaries; “Expert Opinion” (20 percent), which is a 2-year weighted average of school ratings by top academics on a scale of 1 to 5 (YU received a score of 2.8); and “Financial Resources” (10 percent), which measures a school’s average per-student spending.

U.S. News also published a ranking of “Best Value Schools,” in which YU scored in 61st place, a decline from 52nd place from last year. In the “Top Performers on Social Mobility” ranking category, YU tied for 285th place.

U.S. News & World Report has published annual college rankings since 1985. Yeshiva University consistently ranked “third tier” — no higher than 100th — in most of the first few annual reports before leaping to “first tier university” status — top 50 — in the 1997 report with a ranking of 45th best among national universities. From 1997 through 2016, YU’s ranking did not vary much, from a high of 40th in 2003 and 2004 to a low of 52nd in 2008, 2010 and 2016. After falling to 94th in 2018, YU rose last year to 80th before falling again this year. 

According to the report, the median annual starting salary for a YU graduate is $54,600. YU’s acceptance rate is 60 percent, and its student-faculty ratio is 7 to 1. The university’s freshman retention rate is 90 percent and its four-year graduation rate is 80 percent.

Last year's ranking had marked the first improvement in YU's position after six years of downgrades. YU's fall this year continues the trend from prior years.

In other popular college ranking reports, YU’s position remained relatively unchanged. On the Wall Street Journal's ranking of US colleges this year, released Sept. 4, YU rose slightly to 140th place from last year's 148th. On Kiplinger’s list of “Best College Values,” YU fell from 67th place in Dec. 2017 to 72nd place in July 2019.

Editor's Note: This article has been updated to clarify all categories that contribute to the overall U.S. News ranking.