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Furman rises in US News rankings; noted for innovation, teaching, research, first-year experience

Furman University

Last updated September 12, 2022

By Clinton Colmenares, Director of News and Media Strategy

Furman University continues to climb in the U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings, which were released today. Overall, the university ranked 45th among 200 national liberal arts colleges and universities in the country, up from 46th last year.

Furman was most notably recognized as a “Most Innovative School,” placing fourth, the university’s highest rank in any category. Furman has been included on the most innovative list every year since The Furman Advantage launched in 2016. Furman was also highly ranked among National Liberal Arts Colleges for “Best Undergraduate Teaching” (No. 29).

In categories that combine “National Universities” and “National Liberal Arts Colleges,” Furman ranked 31st in “Undergraduate Research,” above schools such as Rice, UCLA, Clemson and Columbia, and 32nd for “First-Year Experience,” tied with Harvard, Vanderbilt, Grinnell and Barnard.

The “Most Innovative,” “Best Undergraduate Teaching,” “Undergraduate Research” and “First-Year Experience” rankings are decided by university presidents, provosts and deans of admissions who are asked to list the top schools that come to mind in the respective categories.

“We know rankings like these reflect only a small part of Furman’s value and our educational experience, but it’s nice to have our peers recognize the hard work, dedication and innovation of our students, faculty and staff, who truly earn the recognition,” said Furman University President Elizabeth Davis.

Innovation has become a hallmark for Furman. “We continually innovate in the classroom, with engaged learning experiences, in student life and in other areas,” Davis said.

One of the most notable and intrinsic innovations is Pathways, an enhancement of The Furman Advantage. Pathways is a series of four one-credit classes led by faculty advisors and peer mentors that builds a foundation of self-awareness and professional skills. In April, Furman’s faculty voted to make Pathways a requirement for all first-year and sophomore students. The Furman Advantage and Pathways are a first in higher education, and many other universities have consulted with Furman on implementing similar programs on their campuses.

Furman regularly appears in other publications’ rankings. In August, The Princeton Review again included Furman in its “Best Colleges” guide and ranked the university in the top 25 in “Most Accessible Professors,” “Best Classroom Experience” and several other categories. Visit this page for more Furman rankings.

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Clinton Colmenares
Director of News and Media Strategy