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Kean Recognized for Innovation, Social Mobility, Diversity by 'U.S. News & World Report'

Students walk on Kean's campus in Union, with the clock tower behind them.

U.S. News & World Report 2022 Best Colleges ranks Kean University a top-performing school for both social mobility and innovation and names it among the most diverse universities in the country.

In the report released Monday, September 13, Kean is ranked number 23 among regional universities in the northern U.S. for social mobility, which recognizes the University’s strength at helping economically disadvantaged students succeed and graduate. It marks the third year in a row the University has been recognized in that category.

Kean also ranks number 20 on the 2022 Best Colleges list of “most innovative” universities in the northern region.

“We are extremely proud of the work we are doing at Kean, and we are honored to be recognized by U.S. News & World Report in two such important areas,” said Kean President Lamont O. Repollet, Ed.D. “Our mission at Kean University is to change the trajectory of students’ lives. All of our effort and innovation are driven toward the goal of helping our students succeed.”

In addition to the two ranking categories, Kean is also listed seventh in the northern U.S. in the U.S. News & World Report 2022 Campus Ethnic Diversity Index.

“We are proud to be known for our diversity, as well as our other many accomplishments,” said Ada Morell ’97, chair of the Board of Trustees. “Many of our students are the first in their families to attend college, and it is our goal to support them and see them achieve their dreams.” 

Kean has long been known as an inclusive university. The University offers numerous scholarship opportunities to help students, as well as programs that support students with academic assistance, social services and other needs. 

The social mobility rankings are calculated by assessing the six-year graduation rates of students who received federal Pell Grants compared with the graduation rate of other students. Those grant recipients generally come from households with annual incomes under $50,000.

The Most Innovative Schools ranking recognizes institutions that have made “innovative improvements toward curriculum, faculty, students, campus life, technology and facilities.” Universities must have received at least seven nominations to be recognized in that category.

Kean has a long list of innovative programs — running the gamut from Equity in Action Presidential Postdoctoral Fellowships, to an on-campus COVID-19 lab in the STEM Building, to the Kean Scholar Academy, a dual enrollment program for high-achieving high school students that prepares them for future college success.

Kean’s campus has also been transformed by the addition of modern buildings with smart classrooms and state-of-the-art labs, including Hynes Hall, the home of the College of Business and Public Management; the Hennings Research addition to Kean’s science building; and the Viser 270-degree visualization and immersive studio in the Nancy Thompson Learning Commons.