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Heights of excellence

The University of Georgia is ranked 10th among public universities in the 2015 New York Times College Access Index.

The index, which ranks UGA 24th among all universities, is based on the share of students who receive Pell Grants, the graduation rate of those students and the cost of attendance for low- and middle-income students.

"The University of Georgia strives to make its world-class education accessible to students from all economic backgrounds," said President Jere W. Morehead. "While we have much left to do, I am pleased that our efforts are being recognized."

Approximately 17 percent of first-year, full-time students entering UGA in 2014 received Pell Grants, which typically go to families earning less than $70,000 annually. In 2014, UGA's six-year graduation rate for students who received Pell Grants was 80 percent.

The University of Florida, at No. 6, was the only other SEC school included in the index's top 25 universities.

UGA is consistently ranked among the nation's top public universities. The university was recently ranked No. 18 on the Forbes "Top 25 Public Colleges 2015" list and 21st among public universities in latest U.S. News and World Report ranking. Washington Monthly ranked UGA as the third "Best Bang for the Buck" school in the southeast in 2015, and Kiplinger's ranked UGA tenth nationally on their 2014 list of the best values among public colleges and universities.

More information on the College Access Index is available at http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/09/17/upshot/top-colleges-doing-the-most-for-low-income-students.html.

Published Thursday,