UAB is Sitting on Top of the World

Published 3:45 pm Friday, December 3, 2021

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) is in the top 10% of education institutions in the world, according to U.S. News and World Report (USNWR). You read that right, not the state or the nation, but the entire world.

USNWR ranked UAB No. 147 of 1,750 universities from ninety countries as one of the Best Global Universities.

UAB was ranked as the top institution in Alabama and in the top 100 areas globally: infectious diseases, surgery, clinical medicine, cardiovascular systems, endocrinology and metabolism, cardiac and immunology, oncology, microbiology and public environmental and occupational health.

Email newsletter signup

UAB has long been experts in all areas of practice to those of us who live here, but what about their reputation outside of Birmingham, the state, nation and world? Well, obviously the feeling is the same.

We, in Alabama, have long known the importance and irrefutable excellent reputation of UAB. If you live outside of Birmingham, you rush there when you have a medical emergency or anything that is medically questionable. It is the go-to place.

The secret is out. Not only is UAB the largest employer in our state with over 18,750 employees, it made Forbes’ list as the No. 1 large employer in the country. It is also our state’s most recognized resource.

That is good for the medical community, good for economic development and good for Alabama. It is specifically good for our state’s often tarnished image and less than stellar reputation regardless of whether it is deserved or not.

As a graduate of UAB, I didn’t get involved in the football debacle years ago as to whether we should have a team or not. However, I did love the once donned Blazer bumper stickers that read, “Our National Award-Winning Championship Team Wears Scrubs.”  It is nice to know all these years later there is room for both “teams” to play at UAB. Obviously with the football team being Western Division Champions for the past three years and conference champions twice, they are both having winning seasons.

When it comes to medical care, it is nice to know we are not only on the state map, but the world map as well. Thank God for UAB and the positive attention it brings our state and the lives it saves through research and outstanding medical care. It is nice to have Alabama at the forefront of medical care and life-saving research. nice to have And, it’s always nice to have a winning football team, too.


Beth Chapman is Alabama’s former State Auditor and 51st Secretary of State. Her statewide column, Around the Capitol can be read in newspapers and blogs across the state. She now owns and operates Beth Chapman & Associates, LLC. She can be reached at