Cal Maritime earns high marks in national college rankings

September 13 2017

By Rachel Raskin-Zrihen, Vallejo Times-Herald

Posted: 09/12/17, 4:47 PM PDT | Updated: 2 hrs ago

City officials, noting that being home to a top-ranked university can only be good news, took particular delight with word that Vallejo’s California State University Maritime Academy ranked first among public colleges in the western region in the 2018 edition of U.S. News and World Report’s Best Colleges.

“I’m just absolutely excited to see how well our colleges placed,” Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan said. “The caliber of education from CMA and also from Touro is phenomenal. What I see is nothing short of exceptional education for our young people. They’re doing great things for the (reputation) of Vallejo and for education as a whole.”

Touro University, California is a private osteopathic medical school located on Mare Island.

Besides the No. 1 ranking among public colleges, CMA’s engineering program was also recognized in the U.S. News report, school spokesman Robert King said.

“In the annual publication, Cal Maritime is ranked third overall in the western region. The engineering program was recognized to be among the best in the nation among those that do not offer a doctoral degree,” he said.

U.S. News and World Report collects data on nearly 1,800 colleges and universities to compile its rankings.

Last month, Washington Monthly ranked Cal Maritime the number five baccalaureate college in the nation for contribution to the public good. In its bang-for-the-buck rankings, the publication ranked CMA No. 3 in the west and No. 1 for alumni earnings.

“The U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard ranks Cal Maritime first among public California universities for graduate earnings 10 years after enrollment,” King said. “The Academy is also one of only 15 four-year colleges in the U.S. to receive a perfect score for “value added” to student outcomes in a study by the Brookings Institute.”

Money magazine ranked the school as one of America’s Best Public Colleges and Forbes recently ranked Cal Maritime No. 20 nationally among public colleges with high-earning graduates.

“Forbes crunched the numbers to find which public colleges and universities — from history-steeped University of Virginia to sea-specific California State University Maritime Academy — have graduates with the highest mid-career salaries,” the magazine states. “If you’re aiming for a lucrative career that begins with an affordable education, these schools are a great place to start.”

Forbes lists No. 20: California State University Maritime Academy, in Vallejo, as producing Mid-Career Earnings of some $98,900.

“Cal Maritime is one of only seven degree-awarding maritime schools across the country, offering six majors, including maritime affairs and marine engineering,” it says.

This is good news for school officials.

“The consistent occurrence of great rankings provides evidence that our intense focus on academic excellence, student success, and affordable education not only matters but it has also been acknowledged widely,” CMA President Tom Cropper said.

King said getting good marks is nothing new for CMA.

“My records show stories about rankings go back until at least 2009 (things get a little spotty before that). But we’re ranked highly in multiple publications that year as well,” he said.

Like Sampayan, King also said he believes that highly-ranked institutions of higher learning benefits the community.

“In addition to access to quality education in a variety of fields of study, those who choose to attend Cal Maritime go on to lucrative careers not only at sea, but in a variety of shore-side industries connected to maritime, transportation, business, policy, and other industries,” he said. “As Cal Maritime expands in the coming years, I expect the impact in the community will grow as well. Many of our alumni are from Vallejo or the surrounding area, and many have chosen to live in the community after graduation.”

Contact Rachel Raskin-Zrihen at (707) 553-6824.