Points of Excellence


National Recognition 
  • Benedictine College launched “Benedictine 2020: A Vision for Greatness” our plan to build one of the great Catholic colleges in America by focusing on academic excellence. (www.benedictine.edu/2020)
  • An editorial in the St. Joseph News Press, “Benedictine Pursues A Vision,” praised the college’s Benedictine 2020 plan as “remarkable and impressive.”
  • U.S. News & World Report rates Benedictine College one of America’s Best.
  • The Cardinal Newman Society Guide lists the college as one of America’s Best Catholic Colleges.
  • First Things magazine named Benedictine College one of the top 20 universities in the country.
  • Colleges of Distinction Guidebook named Benedictine College a leader in educational excellence.
  • In an historic ceremony to which every U.S. bishop was invited, Abbot James Albers, OSB, will consecrate Benedictine College to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  The college is installing a 21-foot fountain of Our Lady of Grace and has gathered over 3 million Memorare prayers in its Memorare Army prayer campaign.  
  • Benedictine College topped Annie Monjar’s Philadelphia magazine list of colleges that “nabbed the 2013 best commencement speakers” for scheduling former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan.
  • Parade magazine ranked Benedictine College’s valedictorian address from 2013 by Alex Urban as one of the top 10 in the nation.
  • At the 2013 National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C., Benedictine College was featured with guests including: U.S. Reps Paul Ryan (Wisc.); Tim Huelskamp (KS); Jeff Fortenberry (NE); Lila Rose, the president of Live Action; Terry Gainer, the Senate Sergeant of Arms; Patrick Reilly, the President of the Cardinal Newman Society; and the U.S. bishops’ Jonathan Reyes.
  • The college’s alumni are recognized around the world for their contributions to society. Find a full listing of notable alumni at www.benedictine.edu. Since 2000, alumni achievements include:

o   More than 100 pursued vocations to the priesthood or religious life.

o   13 bank presidents, including Tom Hoenig, former President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and a current director of the FDIC.

o   7 university presidents, including presidents of Boise State and the University of Dallas.

o   7 bishops, including Bishop John Brungardt and Bishop Andrew Cozzens

o   3 U.S. leaders in Washington, D.C., including Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Terrance Gainer.

o   2 Kansas Secretaries of Commerce, William Thornton and Patrick George.

o   1 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, the late Wangari Maathai. 

  • In the national SSI survey judging student satisfaction, Benedictine College beat the national average in 11 of 12 categories, and virtually tied in the 12th.
  • Benedictine College’s enrollment has increased for 16 consecutive years. This year’s enrollment of over 1,725 full-time undergraduates, including 490 freshmen, triples its enrollment 21 years ago.
  • Over 80% of undergraduate students live on campus in the college’s strong residential tradition.
  • The college has added 11 new residence halls since the year 2000 (two are in construction).
  • Head football coach Larry Wilcox remains Kansas’ all-time winningest four-year college coach.
  • Six varsity sports teams received NAIA Scholar Team recognition. Benedictine College student-athletes average a higher than 3.10 GPA.  
  • Benedictine College’s student retention rate is consistently above 90%.
  • Benedictine College started the Benedictine Raven Network and now stream Benedictine sports’ competitions over the Internet for fans to watch nationwide.  
  • Benedictine College was honored by being one of the few schools selected to participate in both the U.S. bishops’ Higher Education Committee discussions and the Church in America conference at the Vatican. 
  • Benedictine College was the center of attention during the 2013 papal change with students and faculty on campus and in Rome being interviewed by news affiliates of Fox, ABC, and EWTN.
  • Our Institute for Missionary Activity features a symposium each year. This year’s event featured FOCUS founder Curtis Martin, Bishop Robert Morlino, and U.S. bishops’ policy expert Jonathan Reyes.
  • The college sent seven buses that traveled 48 hours round trip to Washington, D.C., for the March for Life in an epic journey featured on EWTN and in USA Today.
  • In the last five years, 67 alumni have gone on to seminary or religious life.
  • Since 2010, the college’s RCIA program has brought 48 students into the fullness of the Catholic faith.
  • Hundreds of students travelled for their faith to such places as New Mexico, North Dakota, Belize, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, the Philippines, India, Brazil, and Rwanda.
  • The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS) was founded on Benedictine College’s campus. Last year, about 650 students participated in FOCUS Bible studies and discipleships.
  • The Hunger Coalition, which was founded here after Blessed Mother Teresa’s 1981 visit, signed up 411 students in its skip-a-meal program last year and served over 10,000 meals to the needy in Atchison.
  • Benedictine College, the flagship college of the New Evangelization, has created a new major called Evangelization and Catechesis. Students focus on either youth ministry or evangelization. The major draws on the expertise of Deacon Dana Nearmyer of the Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kan.
  • The respected SSI survey shows our students care more about academics than the national average, and are more satisfied with their teachers, courses, and advising.
  • Dozens of our professors rank in the top 10% of the national IDEA faculty evaluations yearly.
  • Benedictine College’s nursing program assisted in a campus project with Delete Blood Cancer and in the past two years has identified a total of 16 bone marrow donor matches to date.
  • Through a landmark agreement with the University of North Dakota, Benedictine College is now one of the few Catholic colleges in the nation offering an ABET-accredited program in Chemical, Civil, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering and is experiencing record enrollment in these new programs. 
  • Benedictine College swept the HAAC Commissioner’s Academic Awards by receiving all four awards:  highest GPA for the women’s sports team; highest GPA for the men’s sports team; highest GPA for a female athlete (Elizabeth Stinson); and highest GPA for a male athlete (Brad Lorang). 
  • The college offers students the opportunity to study abroad at its Florence, Italy, campus as well as making available other study abroad programs in 50 countries.  
  • The freshman class entering in 2013 has the highest average ACT scores and GPA in the school’s history.
  • Dr. Larry Sutton, Associate Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry, is doing groundbreaking research with Benedictine College students to fight antibiotic resistant superbugs.
  • Dr. James Madden, Associate Professor of Philosophy, authored the bookMind, Matter, and Nature: A Thomistic Proposal for the Philosophy of Mind, published by Catholic University of America Press.
  • Dr. Mark J. Zia, Associate Professor of Theology, authored the book The Faith Understood: An Introduction to Catholic Theology published by Emmaus Road Publishing.
  • Dr. Darrin Muggli, Professor of Engineering, was named on a patent for a process in the creation of alternative fuels for aviation. His group identified ways to turn waste streams into profitable products, making it economically feasible to implement the overall process.
  • Dr. Kevin Bryant, Chair of the Department of Sociology & Criminology, has developed a pilot “crime mapping” program with the City of Shawnee Police Department that has reduced robbery by 70%, vandalism by 41%, and auto theft by 40%, leading to the program’s expansion