Release Date: September 11, 2023
BUFFALO, N.Y. – As New York State’s flagship, the University at Buffalo is known for providing an excellent education to students from all walks of life.
A new ranking by The New York Times Magazine reinforces that. The magazine published its College-Access Index, a list of the country’s most-selective universities ranked in order of economic diversity.
The Times measured economic diversity by analyzing the share of students receiving Pell Grants, which are offered to high-need students working toward a first bachelor’s degree; typically, students receiving Pell Grants come from the bottom half of the income distribution, The Times notes.
Among 286 U.S. universities ranked by The Times’ index, UB is 28th in the country overall by Pell share rank, and 8th among public universities. Among 50 state flagships, UB is No. 2 nationally.
At UB, 34% of first-year students received Pell Grants in 2020-21. The overall average was 21%, according to The Times. In addition, UB saw a 6-percentage point increase in Pell share between the 2010-11 and 2020-21 school years.
“At UB, we are enriched and benefit from having a community of student scholars from a range of economic backgrounds,” says UB Provost A. Scott Weber. “Ensuring students have access to a world-class education as they work toward achieving their dreams is part of our DNA.”
The New York Times and higher education research group Ithaka S+R analyzed data from the 2020-21 academic year to determine each university’s “Freshmen Pell share,” the percent of first-year, first-time students enrolled in each college who received Pell Grants.
“Studying these numbers is particularly important in the wake of two important developments this year in higher education: the Supreme Court’s decision to do away with race-based affirmative action and the decision by some schools to abandon or reduce legacy admissions,” The Times says. “Each put a new renewed focus on institutional efforts to consider wealth in making admissions decisions. This list shows us how schools are doing.”