By TODD STACY, Alabama Daily News
Auburn University is being elevated to an “R1” institution by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education – a significant milestone that university officials say is a testament to their commitment to “life saving research.”
Auburn goes from its former “high research” R2 classification to the “very high research activity” R1 label. The R1 designation by Carnegie is reserved for doctoral universities with the highest levels of research activity, officials said Monday.
“Auburn is on the move, and this prestigious distinction recognizes Auburn’s critical role in creating new knowledge and helping others live better lives,” said Auburn President Steven Leath.
Leath has made a recommitment to research his defining mission since coming to Auburn in 2016. Last year, Leath put an additional $5 million for three years toward the Presidential Awards for Interdisciplinary Research, or PAIR, and was named to the National Science Board by President Donald Trump.
Universities considered for the R1 designation must have awarded at least 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees and had at least $5 million in total research expenditures, according to Carnegie’s classification website. Auburn has grown its research efforts in both STEM and non-STEM areas, furthering its institutional commitment to offer solutions to real-world problems and grow its reputation as a go-to university in providing results that transform and inspire.
“We are grateful to the university’s faculty and staff, especially Graduate School Dean George Flowers, for their unwavering commitment to elevating Auburn’s profile as a world-class academic institution,” Leath said.