Heller ranks in top 10 social policy schools in new ratings by U.S. News

Photos/Charles A. Radin

An ebullient Dean Lisa Lynch (left) talked with students, faculty and staff of the Heller School at a Dean's Coffee -- with bagels and fruit -- celebrating the U.S. News ranking.

The Heller School for Social Policy and Management has been ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top schools in the United States for its teaching and research into social issues and the creation and implementation of policies to address those issues.

The just-released rankings place Brandeis ninth in the country.

Within hours of the news breaking, expressions of pleasure and pride were pouring into Heller Dean Lisa Lynch’s office from Texas to the Congo.

“There’s so much pride from folks at Heller and from lots of alums,” Lynch said. “It’s like ‘Yes! We’re getting recognized.’ There was a feeling we were a well-kept secret.”

As a practical matter, she said, “This is very helpful for us with graduate students coming from outside the country, and also with [research-]sponsoring agencies. It gives us a stamp.”

The U.S. News ranking is of graduate schools that focus on research and professional training for people trying to improve the lives of children, the elderly, minority groups and disadvantage populations.

“This has been the mission of the Heller School for more than 50 years,” Lynch said.

“We were one of the first schools to focus on what are the root causes of persistent disadvantages and poverty and also to focus on designing policies and thinking about how to implement those policies and deliver social services effectively,” Lynch said. “It’s that dual mission that contributes to this top ten ranking.”

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