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Pacific’s 14:1 student-faculty ratio helps make it one of the top private universities in California.

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U.S. News again ranks Pacific in tier one of "national" universities

Sep 9, 2014

University of the Pacific ranked seventh among California’s top private “national” universities in U.S. News & World Report’s annual Best Colleges ratings, released today.

Competing in the National University category – a group of 268 public and private institutions that includes Princeton, Harvard and Yale – Pacific ranked 116th overall, 15th statewide, and seventh among California private universities.

Yet unlike some of the top-ranked California schools in the national category – including Stanford, Berkeley and UCLA – Pacific is a school where “B” students have a good chance of winning admission. The magazine again singled out Pacific, where the student-faculty ratio is 14 to 1, as an “A-Plus School for B Students” – a top-tier university where talented students with less than a 4.0 GPA have a shot at acceptance.

Pacific also ranked among the top 25 national universities for ethnic diversity, tied with UC Davis, UC Riverside, UC Santa Cruz and San Diego State as well as Columbia, Georgia State, MIT and the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

“Pacific is an exceptional private university with rigorous academics, where talented students receive the personal teaching and experiential learning opportunities that prepare them for success in their careers and lives,” said University of the Pacific President Pamela A. Eibeck. “The latest rankings reflect what we all know – that Pacific is a superb choice for anyone who seeks a teaching-centered private university with a diverse, engaged student body.”

Pacific’s No. 116 ranking among 268 national universities represents a four-point drop from the magazine’s 2014 rankings.  However, Pacific consistently ranks above the midpoint among national universities – the most competitive field in the rankings, where Stanford, UCLA and UC Berkeley also vie.

U.S. News ranks many of California’s small private universities, including the University of Santa Clara, Chapman University and Mills College, in the “West” division of its Regional Universities category rather than in the National University category. This makes it difficult to compare Pacific directly with some of its similar-sized private university peers.

The National University classification includes universities that offer a wide range of undergraduate majors as well as master’s and doctoral degrees.

In California, 10 private and nine public universities are in the magazine’s National University category. They are, in order of rank: Stanford, California Institute of Technology, UC Berkeley, UCLA, University of Southern California, UC San Diego, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, UC Irvine, Pepperdine University, UC Santa Cruz, University of San Diego, University of San Francisco, UC Riverside, University of the Pacific, San Diego State University, Biola University, University of La Verne, and Azusa Pacific University. Among private California colleges, Pacific ranked No. 7.

Highlights of the U.S. News 2015 “Best Colleges” rankings

Ethnic Diversity. “College-bound students interested in studying with people of different backgrounds will want to consider stats on racial and ethnic diversity,” U.S. News notes on its website. The magazine awarded Pacific a 0.70 score for diversity on a scale that ranged from 0.0 to 1.0 (with 1.0 being the most diverse), in a tie for the No. 6 score with eight other national universities.

A-Plus Schools for B Students. “So you’re a scholar with lots to offer and the GPA of a B student, and your heart is set on a great college. No Problem.” That’s how U.S. News introduces its list of top-tier national universities “where nonsuperstars have a decent shot at being accepted and thriving – where spirit and hard work could make all the difference to admissions.” The magazine selected 91 schools for this distinction, listing the schools alphabetically with information about students’ academic competitiveness. At Pacific, the middle two quartiles of students have SAT/ACT scores between 1030 and 1320, the average GPA is 3.5, and 68 percent of freshmen graduated in the top 25 percent of their high school class.

For more information about the rankings:

About University of the Pacific

Established in 1851 as the first university in California, University of the Pacific prepares students for professional and personal success through rigorous academics, small classes, and a supportive and engaging culture. Widely recognized as one of the most beautiful private university campuses in the West, the Stockton campus offers more than 80 undergraduate majors in arts and sciences, music, business, education, engineering and computer science, and pharmacy, and health sciences. The university’s distinctive Northern California footprint also includes a campus in San Francisco, home of the acclaimed Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, and a campus in Sacramento, home of the McGeorge School of Law. For more information, visit

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