Denison, Oberlin top Ohio schools on national ranking

Barney-Davis Hall on Denison's Academic Quad
Posted: January 26, 2017

GRANVILLE, Ohio— Denison University joins Oberlin as one of only two Ohio colleges in the top 30 of a prestigious new national ranking of the best liberal arts colleges by The Times Higher Education and The Wall Street Journal. The ranking is focused on student success and learning, evaluating resources, outcomes, engagement and the learning environment.

Denison’s outstanding education prepares our students for lifetimes of personal and professional success,” said Denison University President Adam Weinberg. “Our students receive fantastic mentoring from faculty who are at the top of their fields, and we have set the gold-standard for career preparation through paid internships, professional skills training and alumni networks that are really engaged with our students. The value of a Denison education continues to grow and this recognition is one mark of that.”

The decision on where to attend college is one of the most impactful a person will make in their life. The Times Higher Education/Wall Street Journal ranking includes performance indicators that answer important student-centered questions: Will I be engaged and challenged by my teacher and classmates? How likely am I to graduate, pay off my loans and get a good job? Does the college have sufficient resources to teach me properly? Denison’s answers to these questions clearly place the college among the best in the nation.

Mentorship is part of every classroom experience – and many outside the class as well. Faculty support students as they tackle learning challenges, and it’s not surprising that they form close relationships. Professors are proud of their students. They regularly attend student athletic and arts events and encourage them in their co-curricular activities. A recent survey noted that 92 percent of Denison students report having connected with a faculty or staff mentor in a meaningful way.

The Knowlton Center for Career Exploration at Denison has expanded its staff, facilities and programming to become one of the finest college career centers in the nation. Students are guided through four years of programs and advising, which help them to discern their chosen career paths; focus on the best pathways to get them there, including internships and alumni networking; and learn the knowledge and skills they need to onboard and succeed. Recent alumni also are supported in their early careers. At five years post-graduation, 93 percent of Denison alumni are working in their desired field or profession, on their way to achieving their professional goals. This ranking recognizes the value of Denison’s comprehensive approach to career preparation.

Learning through global experiences is integral to a Denison education, where more than 50 percent of the college’s students study off-campus. Students have access to Denison Seminars which are courses that include a significant component of off-campus study to locations such as Berlin, Ottawa and The Netherlands. Global learning also is expanding through new programs with Denison’s 17 sister colleges, including those in Paris, India, Hong Kong and Ghana, including faculty exchanges, team-taught courses, and summer programs.

The curriculum at Denison is increasing in breadth and depth, as faculty explore new paths to connect knowledge to burgeoning fields of interest. The university recently added new programs in data analytics, global commerce, financial economics and narrative nonfiction, as well as health, exercise and sport studies. Much of Denison’s classroom learning is connected to real-world research such as biological and environmental studies of local habitats, analyzing current economic policies and evaluating best practices of risk analysis. The curriculum is specifically designed to increase students’ ability to assess and analyze problems, excel in written and oral communications, and work in teams of diverse individuals. It is no accident that these are all traits which employers highly value.

Denison’s healthy endowment of almost $750 million provides the university substantial resources to support its students in learning. Denison’s financial aid packages provide for a wide diversity among its students, enabling qualified students of all economic backgrounds to achieve an outstanding liberal arts education. Living in a complex community, Denison students develop the ability to work in diverse teams, live in diverse communities and connect diverse ideas, all attributes that can give them an advantage in our globalized society.

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