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Catholic colleges and universities make the grade in national survey

Students walk through a hall on university campus

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John Burger - published on 09/19/23

Providence College takes a Number One spot in US News' Best Colleges guidebook.

Several Catholic colleges and universities have made strong showings in the U.S. News & World Report’s 2023-24 Best Colleges guidebook.

Providence College in Rhode Island, the only college or university in the nation run by Dominican Friars, was cited as #1 in the report’s regional universities north category. 

Several Jesuit institutions ranked well in regional universities categories, especially in the northeast: the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania, 5th; Loyola University Maryland in Baltimore, 7th; St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, 8th, and Canisius University in Buffalo, New York, 33rd. 

Others in the regional universities north category included Manhattan College in Bronx, New York, and Siena College in Loudonville, New York, tied for 13; LeMoyne University in Syracuse, New York, and St. Bonaventure in New York State, tied for 17; Salve Regina University in Newport, Rhode Island, 27; and Niagara University in New York State and St. Francis University in Loretto, Pennsylvania, tied for 30. 

Best regional universities west included: University of Portland, 2; St. Mary’s College of California, Moraga, 4; St. Edward’s University in Austin, 6; Mount St. Mary’s University, Los Angeles, 11; St. Mary’s University of San Antonio, 14; Dominican University of California, San Rafael, and University of Dallas, tied at 18, and Saint Martin’s University in Lacey, Washington, 33.

The regional universities midwest category included John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio, 3; Dominican University in River Forest, Illinois, 11 (also #1 in the best value category); Franciscan University of Steubenville 26; and St. Mary of the Woods in Indiana, 35.

Best regional universities south included Christian Brothers University in Memphis, 13, and Xavier University of Louisiana, New Orleans, 16. 

“Come alive and flourish”

Xavier was also ranked #6 in best Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Regional colleges also were divided into four categories. Regional colleges north included the College of Mount St. Vincent in Bronx, New York, 9; St. Francis College in Brooklyn, 18, and Hilbert College in Hamburg, New York, and Mount Aloysius College in Cresson, Pennsylvania, tied for 27.

Regional colleges south included Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama, 8, and Belmont Abbey College in Belmont, North Carolina, 30.

Regional colleges midwest included Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, 8, and Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, 12.

Regional colleges west included Carroll College in Helena, Montana, 3, and John Paul the Great Catholic University, Escondido, California, 15.

The national universities category saw the University of Notre Dame come in at 20 and Georgetown University at 22.

The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusets, was ranked 27th among national liberal arts colleges. 

In addition, Georgetown placed 3rd in best international business programs.

“It’s exciting and encouraging to see the growing number of students choosing to come to Franciscan year after year,” said Third Order Regular Father Dave Pivonka, president of Franciscan University in Steubenville. “But what’s most inspiring is to see them come alive and flourish during their time here. As we saw this past year, it’s the quality, not just the quantity, of our graduates that makes such an impact on our world.” 

The ratings saw Benedictine College in  Atchison, Kansas, jump into the Top 10. “Benedictine College is pleased to be named a Top 10 college by U.S. News & World Report,” said Stephen D. Minnis, president of Benedictine College. “Additional recognition from The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger’s, Forbes, The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College, and others is a clear indication that we are becoming a great Catholic college and our graduates will help transform culture in America.”

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