By Jensen, Randy on October 9, 2020.
Highest-ever position in annual rankings
The University of Lethbridge has achieved its highest-ever position in the annual Maclean’s University Rankings Report, placing second overall in the primarily undergraduate classification.
Moving up three spots from its fifth-place ranking a year ago, the U of L bettered its previous best standing, a third-place ranking that it occupied for six consecutive years, 2013-2017. At the heart of the surge was the university’s continued focus on investing in its students and pushing the boundaries of research across all disciplines.
“It’s exciting to see the efforts of our faculty, staff and students recognized, because it takes our entire community working together to achieve success,” says Mike Mahon, president and vice-chancellor, in a news release “We strive at every level to provide the best student experience, academic experience and research experience for our community of learners and teachers. We believe we offer the best option in the country and one of the best experiences in the world, so it is gratifying to see this reflected in the ranking metrics.”
The U of L saw gains in four of the 13 main ranking categories, while maintaining its standing in other key areas. One area was the percentage of its funding devoted to student services, which ranked fourth of the 19 schools in the primarily undergraduate classification. It’s a metric where the U of L has been amongst the top five schools for six consecutive years.
“There is a culture of support for our students that exists on campus, it’s in everything we do and is integral to our students achieving their academic goals,” adds Mahon. “More than the resources we invest in student services, it’s an attitude amongst our faculty and staff that I believe truly sets us apart from other schools.”
The U of L continues to bolster its reputation as one of the top research institutions in the country, with faculty members and student researchers at both the undergraduate and graduate levels earning substantial funding awards. The U of L ranked second of 19 schools in medical and science grants received, the sixth consecutive year it has ranked either first or second, and jumped two spots to seventh overall in social sciences and humanities grants.
“There is a breadth of research activities across the institution that has positioned the university as a major driver of discovery, creativity and innovation,” says Robert Wood, vice-president (research), in the release. “Our success in medical and science grants is consistently among the best in the country in our category and includes many professors who are world leaders in their research areas. The growth of our humanities, social sciences and arts portfolios continues a trend that has seen more and more of our faculty members across the university recognized for their ground-breaking research and creative activity.”
U of L overall student satisfaction also jumped two spots, placing the institution eighth overall, while the reputational ranking among its 19 peers also rose to sixth overall, a jump of one position.
“Our focus is and always has been on providing an unparalleled learning environment for our students, research experiences at both the undergraduate and graduate stages of their academic careers and growing a research program that betters the lives of people in southern Alberta and beyond,” adds Mahon. “To have that recognized externally and showcased nationally is very good news.”
The full Maclean’s University Rankings Report is available at https://www.macleans.ca/education/university-rankings/canadas-best-primarily-undergraduate-universities-rankings-2021/.