December 13, 2021
Student studying in the library.


Reflecting its deep commitment to inclusion, diversity and equity, Stanislaus State has been ranked in CollegeNET’s 2021 Social Mobility Index (SMI) as one of the best schools in the nation at educating economically disadvantaged students and graduating them into good-paying jobs. 

Ranked No. 23, Stan State has been included in the top 25 for each of the eight years the SMI has been produced.  

All 23 California State University (CSU) campuses are listed in the 2021 SMI. In the top 25, Stan State is joined by 13 other CSU campuses: Los Angeles, Long Beach, Fresno, San Bernardino, Northridge, Dominguez Hills, Pomona, Channel Islands, Fullerton, Bakersfield, Sacramento, East Bay and San Francisco. The No. 1 spot was taken by Bernard M. Baruch College in the City University of New York (CUNY) system. 

CollegeNET is a provider of web-based on-demand technologies for higher education. Colleges that charge low tuition while offering academic support programs to help low-income students earn college degrees and graduate into good-paying jobs consistently rank high on the SMI. 

The SMI ranking is the latest of several accolades bestowed this fall on Stan State. The University placed No. 7 on the Washington Monthly’s “Best Bang for the Buck” in the West list and made its 16th consecutive appearance on The Princeton Review’s national Best 387 Colleges list. U.S. News & World Report ranked Stan State among the Top 30 Universities in the West in four categories, including social mobility and public schools. And Hispanic Outlook on Education magazine ranked Stan State among the nation’s Top 100 Colleges and Universities for Hispanics.   

The SMI ranks 1,550 colleges using five variables: published tuition, percent of student body whose families have an annual income below $48,000 (slightly below the U.S. median), graduation rate, median salary approximately five years after graduation and endowment. The variables are mathematically balanced against live data and weighted. 

As it released its rankings, CollegeNET lauded the efforts made by colleges on the SMI to help students during the COVID-19 pandemic, noting that the pandemic “continues to disproportionately impact low-income students, forcing many to abandon, delay or alter their pursuit of a college degree and the potential that degree provides for social mobility.” 

According to CollegeNET, a high SMI ranking means that a college is contributing in a responsible way to solving the problem of declining economic mobility that has emerged in the United States. Its website states that the SMI can be a valuable guide for students who want to pursue academics at an institution that models awareness and civic responsibility.