Welch College received notification that the institution ranks 16th among “Regional Colleges South” in U.S. News & World Report’s 2020 edition of America’s Best Colleges rankings, according to Welch president Matt Pinson.

The “Best Regional Colleges” category where Welch is ranked includes 273 institutions that focus on undergraduate education and offer a range of degree programs in the traditional liberal arts as well as in professional fields such as business, nursing, and education. Colleges in this category are ranked within four geographic regions: North, South, Midwest, and West.

U.S. News rankings offer opportunities to judge the relative quality of institutions based on widely accepted indicators of excellence: peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving, and more.

“We are delighted about this high ranking in U.S. News and World Report’s Best Colleges,” Pinson said. “It shows our quality to prospective students and their parents, as well as to alumni and supporters. It shows that academic excellence can coexist with a strong commitment to Christian faith and life as the center of the Welch College experience.”

“The first time we were ranked in this publication, back in 2010, we ranked 54th,” Pinson mentioned. “And even that was in the top half of all the Southern schools ranked in the Best Regional Colleges category. So in 10 years we’ve gone from 54th to our ranking of 16th for 2020. To put this in perspective, the next ten colleges in the list that Welch outranked had an average enrollment more than five times our enrollment and an average endowment almost nine times our endowment.”

Welch received especially high marks in five strategic areas. Compared to the other 123 institutions in the Regional Colleges South category, Welch ranked:

#1 in faculty-student ratio
#3 in the percentage of classes under 20 students
#4 in students who were in the top 25% of their high school graduating class
#5 in first-year student retention rate
#10 in alumni giving rate

Welch Provost Matthew McAffee said, “We are grateful to have this evaluative benchmark for our institution. It provides us with an external measurement that helps us to evaluate our quality as an institution of higher learning. Our faculty and staff are to be commended for their effort in helping us attain this level of excellence.”

More information is available about the rankings and methodology in the annual America’s Best Colleges guidebook at: www.usnews.com/collegemeth. For more information about Welch, email gotowelch@welch.edu or visit www.welch.edu.

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