HACKETTSTOWN, NJ, (Warren County — Centenary University was named a Top Performer in Social Mobility in the U.S. News & World Report 2023-2024 Best Colleges listing, which was released last month.
The designation places Centenary among the nation’s best educational institutions for advancing the careers and lives of its graduates, especially first-generation students and those facing economic challenges.
In this year’s listing, Centenary is ranked 23rd for social mobility among Top Performers on Social Mobility, as well as 104th in the Regional Universities North listing.
“This designation affirms the commitment of our faculty and staff to ensure that every Centenary student has the support to succeed academically, and later, in life,” said Dale G. Caldwell, Ed.D., president of Centenary University. “Studies show that college graduates have the potential to earn $1.2 million more than those without a degree. At the end of the day, social mobility is the most important factor to students and their parents when they’re considering college.”
According to the U.S. News & World Report website, the publication’s Social Mobility ranking measures how well schools graduate large proportions of economically and educationally disadvantaged recipients of federal Pell Grants, the majority of which are awarded to students whose adjusted gross family income is under $50,000 annually.
The social mobility ranking specifically tracks each college’s success at graduating Pell Grant recipients and achieving equitable outcomes for students from underserved backgrounds.
Centenary University Vice President for Enrollment Management Robert L. Miller, Jr, Ed.D, said, “Centenary is very intentional in awarding aid packages that put a college education within reach for students facing economic challenges. We have seen firsthand the transformative power a Centenary education has on the future for our students. In fact, it’s so important that an anonymous benefactor recently donated $100,000 to fund scholarships, with an emphasis on first-generation college students at Centenary.”
In addition to generous aid packages, Centenary has instituted a new way of looking at college admissions to level the playing field for prospective students. Called Life Circumstances Admissions, the approach allows the University’s admissions officers to consider the unique life experiences of applicants of all races, ethnicities, and economic backgrounds when considering college applications.
“This is one of the most important things we’ve introduced since I became president of Centenary on July 1,” Dr. Caldwell said. “Due to their economic circumstances, some students don’t have access to things like SAT prep courses, private tutors, and elite athletics coaching. That shouldn’t hinder their chance to attend a great college. This unique approach to admissions enables Centenary to create extraordinary opportunities for all students—including those who are first generation or economically challenged—to grow intellectually, emotionally, and professionally.”