WT Scores High in National Rankings in Nursing, Plant Science, Emergency Management, Theater, More 

Chip Chandler

Photo provided by WTAMU Communication and Marketing

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124, [email protected]


CANYON, Texas — West Texas A&M University has earned high marks in several top fields in recent rankings, burnishing its reputation as the Panhandle’s University.

Such rankings demonstrate WT’s commitment to providing high quality, economically feasible education to students across Texas and the world as the University strengthens its position as a regional research university, as laid out in the long-range plan WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is being fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign.

College Factual, the largest source of higher education data and analytics in the country, ranked WT in the Top 5 percent for overall value for a bachelor’s degree and gave the University 335 badges in its 2022 rankings, including in programs that generally are ranked less frequently.

WT’s plant, soil and environmental science program is highly ranked in several categories, and WT also earned Top 5 best value rankings for graduate computer information systems and criminal justice programs and undergraduate athletic training and music programs.

“Students graduating with a degree in plant, soil and environmental sciences from WT have been well prepared in content which results in high placement rate,” said Dr. Lance Kieth, associate dean of the Paul Engler College of Agriculture and Natural Sciences and professor of agricultural education. “Equally as important, our faculty continue to create opportunities to develop students as leaders, problem solvers and communicators through both academic and industry connections. It is rewarding to see recognition of these efforts from national rankings.”

Among the other top rankings: Best Public Administration Bachelor’s Degree in Texas and in the Southwest region for WT’s emergency management administration degrees; and Best Musical Theater Bachelor’s Degree, Drama and Theater Arts Bachelor’s Degrees in Texas and the Southwest region.

“The WT Theatre program’s reputation, quality and affordability continues to be among the best in the state and region, and it’s great to see this kind of recognition which helps students choose our University and our program to study theatre or musical theatre,” said Stephen Crandall, Art, Theatre and Dance department head and professor of theatre. “We have outstanding faculty who are successfully cultivating the next generation of theatre artists, practitioners, and educators.”

College Factual uses government data and schoolwide indicators to assess specific programs. For 2022, it surveyed 2,576 colleges around the country.

In addition, Online Bachelor Degrees ranked WT No. 1 in its list of best online schools for bachelor degrees in nursing for 2021.

The RN to BSN program at WT, which provides about 70 percent of nurses employed throughout the Texas Panhandle, was ranked over such schools as University of Wisconsin — Milwaukee, University of Florida and University of Texas — Arlington.

Online Bachelor Degrees considers degree program requirements, online school requirements and supplementary services in making its rankings.

EduMed.org, which connects students with expert-driven information about education, training and financial aid opportunities in healthcare and medical support, gave WT top rankings in two programs.

Plus, WT’s online master of science in nursing and nurse practitioner programs both were ranked among the most affordable in the nation.

To be eligible, a school must hold active regional accreditation and have at least one partially online program in the ranking subject. Just eight percent of U.S. postsecondary institutions earned a ranking position.

EduMed.org researched more than 7,700 accredited schools using data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and from the schools themselves. Its data science team then applied a proprietary algorithm to rank all qualifying schools for each healthcare discipline.

WT nursing graduates, over the past five years, have averaged a 97 percent score on the National Council Licensure Examination, required by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing to test the competency of nursing school graduates in the United States and Canada. Nationally, the average is 85 percent; in Texas, it’s 87 percent.

“Our Department of Nursing provides excellent education for students at reasonable costs to both students and the state, and we are grateful that our efforts are not going unnoticed,” said Dr. J. Dirk Nelson, dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. “Ultimately, these rankings show our value not only to our students, but also to the wellbeing of the entire Texas Panhandle.”

These are only the most recent honors in a series of accolades. WT’s undergraduate elementary teacher preparation program has been named among the top in the country, and its online bachelor of nursing program was recently named one of the 10 best in the country. The University was ranked among the Top 10 safest campuses in the country and the safest in Texas, and the University Police Department was, for a second time, named a Recognized Law Enforcement Agency from the Texas Police Chiefs Association Foundation.

In more than 1,200 online programs surveyed by U.S. News & World Report in 2020, WT has, among Texas schools, the No. 1 online bachelor’s program, online bachelor’s programs for veterans, online MBA programs for veterans, online specialized graduate business program for veterans and online graduate information technology program. WT also ranks No. 2 for online specialized graduate business program and No. 4 for online MBA program, also among Texas schools.


About West Texas A&M University

WT is located in Canyon, Texas, on a 342-acre residential campus. Established in 1910, the University has been part of The Texas A&M University System since 1990. WT, a Hispanic Serving Institution since 2016, boasts an enrollment of about 10,000 and offers 60 undergraduate degree programs, 40 master’s degrees and two doctoral degrees. The University is also home to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the largest history museum in the state and the home of one of the Southwest’s finest art collections. The Buffaloes are a member of the NCAA Division II Lone Star Conference and offers 14 men’s and women’s athletics programs.


Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, every week.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.