Forbes ranks Centre among “America’s Top Colleges”

Posted by Centre News in News, Rankings 21 Aug 2014

forbesContinuing to deliver on its earned reputation as a national leader in higher education, Centre College has once again landed a top-100 designation among Forbes’ annual listing of “America’s Top Colleges.”

The Forbes review of the nation’s top 650 schools differentiates itself by evaluating quality of outcomes above all else, pointing its criteria to return on investment and asking the question: “What are students getting out of college?”

According to the Forbes report, Centre students are receiving one of the nation’s best educational values. It cites the College as #81 overall among the nearly 3,500 public and private colleges and universities in the U.S.

Centre also makes the grade in other national categories listed online by Forbes. When measured against the guide’s winning formula of student satisfaction, graduate outcomes, high graduation rates and academic success, Centre claims the #68 position among all American private colleges and universities and #39 when counting national liberal arts colleges alone.

Regionally, Centre claims the #3 position among liberal arts colleges in the South and #11 when compared to all Southern colleges and universities. This is the seventh year in a row that Forbes has named Centre a top-15 college or university in the South.

Forbes considers its focus “on educational outcomes, not reputations” as the distinguishing factor against other college rankings. Compiled by the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, the Forbes methodology concentrates on “things that matter most to students: quality of teaching, great career prospects, high graduation rates and low-levels of debt.”

Centre hits the mark in each of these categories, further endorsing the College’s belief that “quality and affordability are not mutually exclusive, as suggested by our mission of preparing bright, diligent young men and women from all socioeconomic backgrounds for exemplary lives of work and service through a transforming education,” says Centre President John A. Roush.

A key component of this mission—and further evidence of Centre’s educational value—is the College’s personal guarantee to each student. Provided academic and social expectations are met, the Centre Commitment promises a study abroad experience, a research or internship opportunity and graduation in four years—all of which Centre students carry out in record numbers.

Approximately 85 percent of Centre students study abroad at least once, supporting the College’s reputation as a national leader in international education. Exemplifying Centre’s highly collaborative and engaging culture, 81 percent of students participate in an internship or research experience, both in and beyond the classroom.

At 86 percent, the College’s four-year graduation rate far exceeds the national average, as does the rate at which Centre students achieve post-graduate success: 96 percent are employed or engaged in advanced study within 10 months of graduation.

All of this high achievement comes with equally high opportunity: Centre prides itself on remaining one of the most affordable private liberal arts colleges in the nation. The College is committed to keeping rising tuition costs at a minimum—holding them to no more than 3 percent annually, all while increasing financial aid for the 90 percent of Centre students who receive support.

“Proud as we are of this year’s rankings, the value of a Centre degree is best measured by the extraordinary success of our students,” says Roush. “Our graduates go on to make a meaningful impact in the world, not only achieving personal success in their chosen careers but also making a difference for good in the lives of others.

“That is the true value of a Centre education,” he adds.

See Forbes’ “Top Colleges” list.

Read the complete Forbes methodology.

by Amy Clark Wise