CUNY ranks high in economic mobility for low-income students

Jahlil Rush, Production Assistant

Ten CUNY senior colleges were ranked among top U.S. colleges in providing students with a pathway to economic mobility, according to a survey from Third Way,  a public policy organization.

CUNY Chancellor Félix Matos Rodríguez released a statement following the rankings, where he credited Third Way for confirming CUNY’s educational success.

“This new study from the Third Way organization is the latest to validate CUNY’s success in lifting students into the middle class,” Matos Rodríguez said. “In focusing on the return students get on the investment they make in their education; the researchers have affirmed the high value of a CUNY education.”

According to the report published in January 2022, Baruch College was ranked No.7  on the “Top Ten Schools with a Strong Price-to-Earnings Premium for Low-Income Students” list. Baruch is joined on the list by Ivy League schools including Harvard University, Stanford University and Duke University.

The survey focused on economic mobility in a separate list, which featured Lehman College and John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Lehman was ranked No.9 while John Jay was ranked No.10.

They are joined by other universities nationwide, including six California State University campuses and Texas A&M International University.

City College, Brooklyn College and Hunter College ranked in the top 20 while Baruch, Queens College, York College and the College of Staten Island ranked in the top 50.

Third Way used data from a 2017 study conducted by Harvard economist Raj Chetty regarding the roles that some colleges have in highlighting intergenerational mobility.

The organization created an economic mobility index that seeks to look at multiple U.S. colleges to determine which ones have the best abilities in moving students towards economical success.

Researchers found colleges whose enrollment comprised of the largest number of students with low-income backgrounds.

Research teams have relied on this data. In November 2021, the Social Mobility Index released its 2021 ranking.

CUNY colleges ranked high in providing low-income students an affordable education, while also being credited with launching students into careers with “well-paying” salaries.

“I’m proud to see so many of our colleges in the top ranks once again,” Matos Rodríguez said.

“By any measure, we are fulfilling our historical promise as a beacon of opportunity for New Yorkers regardless of background or bank account.”