Cal Poly Named Best in the West by U.S. News for 26th Consecutive Year

Latest ranking follows No. 1 showing in Forbes Best Colleges list

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Cal Poly has been named the best public, master’s-level university in the West by U.S. News & World Report’s annual America’s Best Colleges guidebook for the 26th straight year.

The 2019 guidebook lists Cal Poly in 12th place overall in the West for all regional universities. The Western regional list includes public and private institutions in 15 states that provide “a full range of undergraduate and master’s-level programs but few doctoral programs.” (Universities that grant doctoral degrees, such as those in the University of California system, are listed in a separate category.)

The U.S. News ranking comes on the heels of Forbes naming Cal Poly the No. 1 public masters-level university in California.

“Each of these rankings on its own is an honor; taken together, they paint a clear picture of how Cal Poly is succeeding in its mission to prepare students to be innovative leaders in their careers and solve real-world problems in a global marketplace,” said Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong. “Our faculty and staff work diligently every day with our amazing students to create our renowned Learn by Doing environment. Their efforts are paying off.”

Cal Poly placed highly in several additional rankings for regional universities, including:

  • First in the West for Most Innovative Schools — institutions making the most innovative improvements in terms of curriculum, faculty, students, campus life, technology, or facilities.
  • Tied for eighth (with Cal Poly Pomona) on the magazine’s list of best undergraduate teaching programs in the West — universities that put a particular focus on teaching undergraduate students, rather than focusing on graduate-level research.
  • Eighth on the list of best master's/bachelor's engineering programs in the nation. Among specialty programs, Cal Poly’s computer engineering program was ranked No. 1 in computer engineering; second in mechanical, communications, and aerospace engineering; and third in civil engineering.
  • Sixth in the West for most veteran-friendly universities — a listing that shows which top-ranked schools participate in federal initiatives helping veterans and active-duty service members pay for their degrees.

The U.S. News rankings methodology focuses on academic excellence, with schools evaluated on hundreds of data points and measures of academic quality, such as graduation and freshman retention rates.

For more on Cal Poly’s U.S. News ranking, visit:

Contact: Matt Lazier

September 10, 2018

# # #


Related Content