Rankings and recognition

Rankings and awards don’t define VCU, but they do illuminate our status as one of the nation’s premier urban, public research universities.

The evidence is in our leading medical centertop arts school and nationally ranked graduate programs. U.S. News & World Report and other publications laud many of our graduate programs as among the best in the country — that includes No. 1 rankings for sculpture and nurse anesthesia.

VCU and its Medical Center are praised as best places to work, and the student body attracts kudos for both its impressive diversity and its commitment to community service.

We’ve moved into the top 100 in National Science Foundation research rankings, and our focus on sustainability led to an ENERGY STAR certification for meeting strict energy-efficiency levels set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

At VCU, setting the bar for excellence is part of our daily work.

National rankings

Top-50-ranked graduate and first professional programs
U.S. News & World Report | As of March 30, 2021
Fine Arts - Sculpture 1st
Nursing Anesthesia 1st
Fine Arts - Printmaking 2nd
Fine Arts - Glass 3rd
Fine Arts 4th
Fine Arts - Graphic Design 4th
Rehabilitation Counseling 4th
Health Care Management 5th
Time-based New Media 5th
Education (online) 10th
Fine Arts - Painting/Drawing 12th
Nursing Administration (online) 12th
Occupational Therapy 15th
Special Education (online) 15th
Educational Administration (online) 19th
Social Policy 19th
Pharmacy 20th
Physical Therapy 20th
Nuclear Engineering 22nd
Social Work 25th
Best Education Schools 26th
Urban Policy 28th
Nursing (online) 32nd
Best Nursing Schools: Master"s 33rd
Public Management and Leadership 34th
Best Nursing Schools: Doctor of Nursing Practice 38th
Public Affairs 38th
Clinical Psychology 43rd

Recent recognitions

VCU recognized for its internationalization efforts
Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities

VCU’s M.F.A. in Interior Design ranked No. 10 in the nation
Design Intelligence Rankings
View the ranking »

Ahead of Election Day, VCU is recognized as a top college for student voters
Washington Monthly

VCU awarded Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award
INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine

VCU recognized among ‘Top 100’ institutions for minority students
Diverse: Issues in Higher Education

Four specialties at VCU Medical Center recognized in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals rankings
U.S. News & World Report

CHoR named one of nation’s best children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report

VCU’s commitment to military veterans garners recognition from Virginia Department of Veterans Services

Evans-Haynes Burn Center earns Beacon Award for nursing excellence
American Association of Critical Care Nurses

VCU recognized as a top producer of Gilman scholars

VCU Alumni’s RVA GOLD Chapter receives Governor’s Volunteerism and Community Service Award

VCU researchers named Virginia’s Outstanding Scientists for 2018

VCU Libraries receives Excellence in Academic Libraries Award
Association of College and Research Libraries and GOBI Library Solutions from EBSCO

VCU ranked Virginia's best employer for diversity

VCU Globe wins national award for innovation and international education
Institute for International Education

VCU researchers recognized for being in top 1 percent of most cited authors in 2017
Clarivate Analytics

VCU Health orthopaedic surgery units honored with prestigious nursing award
American Association for Critical-Care Nurses

VCU recognized as top Fulbright producing institution

VCU Health nationally recognized for exemplary graduate medical education program

VCU honored for rich workplace experience

Mary and Frances Youth Center garners Innovation Award from USTA Mid-Atlantic

VCU Health earns Top Performer on Key Quality Measures® recognition from The Joint Commission

VCU recognized among nation’s best for closing minority graduation rate gap
The Education Trust

International organization recognizes VCU Police for victim services and surveillance cameras
International Association of Chiefs of Police

VCU Medical Center ranked among the best hospitals in the country and No. 1 in Virginia by U.S. News & World Report

VCU Medical Center awarded Baby-Friendly Hospital designation for exceptional maternity care

VCU dance program ranked in the top 10 in the country for choreography

VCU Medical Center receives first and only advanced certification as a Comprehensive Stroke Center in Virginia

School of Pharmacy recognized for transformative community service

VCU Globe wins award for higher education international initiatives

VCU School of Engineering ranked No. 9 in doctoral degrees awarded to women
The American Society for Engineering Education

VCU designated a crime prevention campus
Virginia Criminal Justice Services Board

Women’s Care Wing at VCU Medical Center earns gold Beacon Award for Excellence
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses

Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU’s NICU earns gold Beacon Award for Excellence
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses

VCU’s Cary Street Gym named among top college gyms and student rec centers
Best Value Schools

VCU recognized as one of top military-friendly campuses in nation
Victory Media

VCU again one of country’s coolest schools
Sierra magazine

VCU Massey Cancer Center’s bone marrow transplant unit first to receive Beacon Award for Excellence

VCU named among top employers for older workers for seventh time
AARP and the Society for Human Resource Management
View the award »

U.S. News & World Report ranks Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU among the nations best in nephrology services

VCU ranks among best universities for minorities among non-historically black schools
Diverse: Issues in Higher Education
View the rankings »

VCU Medical Center and Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU physicians recognized in 2013 Top Docs list
Richmond magazine

VCU moves into Top 50 for American public research universities
The Center for Measuring University Performance
View the report »

More than 30 VCU programs earn spot among nation’s best
U.S. News & World Report

VCU earns President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction award
Corporation for National and Community Service

VCU Medical Center ranks No. 1 in Virginia
U.S. News & World Report

Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU receives national quality care award
American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living

VCU moves into top 100 in National Science Foundation research rankings
National Science Foundation

VCU internationally ranked in the 2011 Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities
National Taiwan University
View the rankings  PDF »

Physical Plant Administration Building earns EPA’s ENERGY STAR Certification for superior energy efficiency
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

VCU Health System named a top 50 company for executive women for fifth time
National Association for Female Executives (NAFE)

VCU named one of the Most Popular Universities
U.S. News & World Report
View more about the award »

VCU earns Research University, Very High Research Activity and Community Engagement classifications
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
View the classifications »

VCU Interior Design ranks among top 10 programs in the country
DesignIntelligence magazine

VCU School of Business selected as one of “The Best 300 Business Schools”
The Princeton Review

Children’s Hospital of Richmond Pediatric ICU receives Beacon Award
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses

Carnegie Foundation recognizes VCU for its community initiatives
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

VCU receives A- in the national Green Report Card
College Sustainability Report Card
View more about the award »

VCU Health System named one of the 100 best companies for the sixth time
Working Mother Magazine
View more about the award »

VCU Medical Center’s Stroke Program receives Gold Achievement awards
American Heart Association/American Stroke Association

VCU Medical Center Neuroscience ICU earns Beacon Award
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses

VCU Health System named Top 50 Companies for Executive Women for fourth time
National Association for Female Executives (NAFE)

VCU Medical Center MRICU earns Beacon Award for critical care excellence
American Association of Critical Care Nurses

VCU among 2009 survey of nation’s Top 25 “Best Neighbor” Colleges and Universities
Saviors of Our Cities: A Survey of Best College and University Civic Partnerships