Home Carrollton UWG Recognized for Efforts in Social Mobility

UWG Recognized for Efforts in Social Mobility

(Last Updated On: October 19, 2020)

The University of West Georgia prides itself on putting students first. When economically disadvantaged prospective students are in need of financial assistance in order to attend the university, the Pack comes together to make sure those needs are met. 

Because of these efforts, U.S. News & World Report has recognized UWG for its success in social mobility. UWG has been ranked 48th in the country and second in Georgia among Top Performers in Social Mobility.

Social mobility is defined by U.S. News as the movement of individuals, families, households or other categories of people within or between social strata in a society, and the Social Mobility Index (SMI) measures the extent to which a college or university educates more economically disadvantaged students (with family incomes below the national median) at lower tuition and graduates them into good paying jobs.

Statistically, financially challenged students are less likely than others to finish college, but UWG has proven more successful than other universities at advancing social mobility by enrolling and graduating large proportions of disadvantaged students, awarding them with Federal Pell Grants. Students who demonstrate exceptional financial need are eligible for the grants. 

Dr. André L. Fortune, vice president for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, said the recognition is a great honor and that it is an unequivocal reflection of the university’s outstanding work toward aiding the betterment of society.  

“We couldn’t be more proud of this notable distinction,” Fortune said. “Access to higher education is one of the key factors in propelling youth toward upward mobility, and affordability by way of access to a high number of Pell Grants sets UWG apart from other universities. Once enrolled, students gain great value through their experiences here. Transforming lives is the foundation of our work.”

Dr. David Jenks, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs, said he personally relates to students who are in need of financial assistance and is elated that UWG has been bestowed such a distinguished honor.

“This is incredible news,” Jenks said. “UWG is well-positioned to serve students across the economic spectrum and has worked diligently to ensure every student, regardless of economic status, has the ability to succeed in their educational pursuits. This ranking highlights our commitment to students who face economic challenges, in large part due to the faculty and staff’s dedication to helping all those who join our Pack. As a former Pell-eligible student, I could not be more proud of this ranking.”

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Sam Gentry is a lifelong resident of Carroll County, Georgia. In August of 2007, while enrolled at the University of West Georgia, Sam worked at University Communications and Marketing for two semesters as a student assistant. He began writing for a local newspaper that same year. After graduating from UWG in 2010, Sam continued working for the same paper, where he made his way through the ranks, eventually becoming General Manager in 2017. Sam joined the UCM team again in January of 2020 where he serves as Manager of Media Relations. Besides being a liaison to media outlets, Sam’s writing efforts are focused on the Richards College of Business. In his free time, Sam enjoys writing songs, woodworking, and traveling with his wife, Becky, and four children: Samantha, Will, Audrey, and Gracie.