The 2019 Best Colleges rankings by U.S. News & World Report has named the University of Central Arkansas in the top 30 best regional public institutions in the south.

The report, which was released Monday, ranks UCA No. 26 in the top public schools category of regional universities in the south, which is the “highest ranking among other Arkansas regional public universities, defined as an institution that provides a full range of undergraduate majors and master’s programs," according to U.S. News & World Report.

“For at least the last seven years, UCA has continually ranked in the top 30 of the Top Public Schools category among regional universities in the South. This continuous ranking solidifies our standing as a leader in innovative education and experiential learning opportunities for our students,” UCA President Houston Davis said in a news release. “Following a year of unprecedented fundraising for the university, we recently welcomed 2,033 freshman students who also are the most academically qualified in university history.”

He said the university expects will continue to maintain the “top-tier ranking.”

Universities in the best regional universities category were ranked against their peer groups in one of four geographic regions.

“Generally, these universities draw students most heavily from surrounding states, according to U.S. News & World Report,” the release states.

Overall, UCA ranks 71 among public and private institutions in the Top Tier of the Best Regional Universities in the South category.

Founded in 1907, the University of Central Arkansas “dedicates itself to academic vitality, integrity and diversity,” and “strives to provide strong academic programs to meet the diverse needs of those it serves through innovations in learning, scholarship and creative endeavors.”