New Study puts Benedictine in National Top 20

Published: Friday, October 22, 2010

A major study of more than 2,000 colleges and universities, from American University to Yale, has named Benedictine College as one of the top 20 colleges in America. The study, conducted by First Things magazine, places Benedictine at number 18 in the nation among all colleges and number 5 among Catholic colleges. According to First Things, the ratings seek to include the importance of religion in higher education and are based on: their own poll results; results from an anonymous Facebook poll ; follow-up interviews; various government data; publicly available data on institutions of higher education; and previously published college guides and rankings.


“As with the U.S. News & World Report rankings and the Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College, these publications continue to confirm that we are achieving our mission and vision,” said President of Benedictine College Stephen D. Minnis. “This lets everyone know what our students, faculty and staff can already see; that Benedictine College is becoming one of the top Catholic colleges in America.”

On the national list, Benedictine is joined in the Top 25 by such notables as the University of Notre Dame (16), Princeton (3), Duke (8), Columbia (14), Yeshiva University (6), Brigham Young (5), Stanford (15), U.S. Air Force Academy (4), U.S. Naval Academy (25), Franciscan University (10), and the University of Dallas (12). The top spot went to Wheaton College, a small liberal arts college near Chicago. It scored high across the board in academics, social, and religious ratings.


“Two years ago, First Things began collecting publicly available data on 2,063 institutions of higher learning in the United States,” said Joseph Bottum, the magazine’s editor. “Over the last year, we followed that up with polling of students and recent graduates on religious, academic, and social atmosphere of their schools. And we followed that with queries among our academic friends and colleagues.”

The goal, according to Bottum, was to determine if there are any schools in America where students can receive a socially useful diploma, get a good education, and “not have the faith beaten out of them.” According to their rankings, Benedictine is one of those places.


Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas. The school is proud to have been named one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report for the past four years as well as one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation. It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging. It has a mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.