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Cal State LA continues impressive rise in U.S. News & World Report rankings

September 13, 2020
Aerial view of Cal State LA campus
Photo: Aerial view of Cal State LA. (Credit: J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)

Cal State LA continues impressive rise in U.S. News & World Report rankings

September 13, 2020
Aerial view of Cal State LA campus
Photo: Aerial view of Cal State LA. (Credit: J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)

For the seventh consecutive year, Cal State LA has continued to ascend as one of the nation’s top regional universities in the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings.

Cal State LA ranks 26th among all private and public regional universities in the western United States, rising five spots from the previous year, according to the 2021 rankings released today.

During the past seven years, Cal State LA has jumped 70 spots among all private and public regional universities in the West.

In the latest rankings, the university recorded strong marks for its undergraduate engineering and business programs, low student debt, social mobility and commitment to teaching students.

Among top public regional universities in the West, Cal State LA ranks 9th. Last year, the university was ranked 12th.

“These rankings reflect Cal State LA’s unwavering commitment to student success,” said Cal State LA President William A. Covino. “I’m proud of the hard work by our students, faculty and staff that helped us achieve these impressive gains.”

Two Cal State LA programs were featured among the nation’s best undergraduate programs and have been included in the U.S. News & World Report rankings for more than two decades.

The engineering program in the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology is one of the top 5 in the nation among public, master’s awarding institutions, excluding military academies, the rankings show.

The business program in the College of Business and Economics continues to be one of the top 10 in California among public institutions.

Cal State LA earned a spot in a new ranking category this year for undergraduate computer science programs. The program in the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology was ranked among the top 20 in California.

The university was also ranked 16th among regional universities in the West for faculty and administrators who are committed to teaching undergraduate students in a high-quality manner.

Cal State LA Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs José Luis Alvarado underscored the important role of faculty in these rankings.

“I’m impressed by our faculty’s dedication and their willingness to embrace creativity and innovation in instructing our students,” Alvarado said.

U.S. News & World Report relies on key measurements to develop its rankings. These include graduation rates, alumni giving, class size and student-faculty ratio, areas in which Cal State LA continues to achieve significant success.

Alumni giving has been a cornerstone of We Are LA: The Campaign for Cal State LA. The campaign has raised more than $75 million from 14,600 donors. That figure has surpassed the goal of the campaign—which was to raise $75 million by the university’s 75th anniversary in 2022.

Last spring, Cal State LA awarded more than 7,200 degrees, the highest number in the history of the university.

U.S. News & World Report also recognized Cal State LA for its affordability. Those who received bachelor’s degrees from Cal State LA have the third-lowest debt among graduates of schools in the western region. Cal State LA is also listed as one of the top 20 Best Value Schools and among the Top Performers on Social Mobility.

“Cal State LA is poised to continue its impressive ascent and to educate our students in ways that transform their lives, their families and their communities,” said Cal State LA Executive Vice President Jose A. Gomez.

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California State University, Los Angeles is the premier comprehensive public university in the heart of Los Angeles. Cal State LA is ranked number one in the United States for the upward mobility of its students. Cal State LA is dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good, offering nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education, and the humanities. Founded in 1947, the University serves more than 26,000 students and has more than 250,000 distinguished alumni.

Cal State LA is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center, Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility, Billie Jean King Sports Complex and the TV, Film and Media Center. For more information, visit