Photo of Saint Martin's Old Main Building and Grand Staircase
September 10, 2019

LACEY, Wash. – Saint Martin’s University has earned a place among the country’s best regional universities in the West, according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2020 Best Colleges rankings. The University is ranked 27th overall in the Western region, up from 37th in last year’s rankings. The Western region of universities includes institutions in Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

To determine overall rankings for universities and colleges, U.S. News and World Report says it evaluates higher education institutions based on 16 measures of academic quality, including first-year student retention, graduation rates, social mobility, class sizes, faculty resources, expert opinion, student excellence, alumni giving and other data. U.S. News and World Report defines regional universities as those that offer a broad scope of undergraduate degrees and some master’s degrees.

“What is most impressive about this ranking is the leap from 37th to 27th in one year,” said Saint Martin’s University President Roy F. Heynderickx, Ph.D. “Our delivery of high quality, value-centered, transformative education is attracting notice nationally as well as regionally.”

  • Saint Martin’s was also listed 41st among top-performing regional universities in the West for social mobility, a ranking that measures how well universities graduate students who receive federal Pell Grants, which typically are awarded to students from households with less than $50,000 in annual income.
  • In addition, the University was listed 15th in the best colleges for veterans category among regional universities in the West.
  • Saint Martin’s also ranked 37th for campus ethnic diversity among regional universities in the West, and the highest among regional universities in Washington state. U.S. News and World Report determines the campus ethnic diversity ranking by examining how likely it is for students to encounter others from a different ethnic group.

“As a Catholic, Benedictine university, the community at Saint Martin’s takes great pride in ensuring that all are welcome,” said Kate Boyle, Ph.D., provost and vice president of academic affairs. “Our diversity provides opportunities for each of us to learn from one another. We encourage multiple perspectives of the world, as these experiences enrich our programs and our lives.”

The University also earned a rank of 17 among the best value schools for regional universities in the West. U.S. News and World Report ranks best value schools by analyzing measures including the ratio of quality to price, the percentage of undergraduate students receiving need-based aid and the average discount (the percentage of an institution’s total sticker cost covered by need-based scholarships or grants for undergraduates in the 2018-2019 academic year).

Saint Martin’s University is an independent, four-year, coeducational university located on a wooded campus of more than 300 acres in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 13 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 29 majors, 11 graduate programs and five certificate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education, nursing and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes more than 1,300 undergraduate students and 250 graduate students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its Lacey campus, and more students to its extended campus located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

For additional information:

Genevieve Chan
Vice President, Marketing and Communications

Kevin Hyde
Media Relations Manager