U.S. News-ranks Goshen College at top of national tier; GC also places high for study abroad program and students with least debt

GOSHEN, Ind. – In the 2004 issue of U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best Colleges” which hits newsstands today, Goshen College ranked 111th in the nation among liberal arts colleges-bachelors, placing it at the very top of the third tier, or quartile, of the 217 other similar schools. This is the third straight year Goshen College has placed in the third tier of the rankings, after moving up from the fourth tier of the equivalent National Liberal Arts Colleges category in 2000.

Goshen College also ranked high for its 35-year-old study abroad program, placing 14th among all colleges and universities in the nation with 64 percent of students who study abroad. Goshen’s strong global connections are also evident in the 12th-place ranking for the presence of international students, who make up 10 percent of the student body.

“One of our core values is global citizenship, and these two statistics demonstrate a rare level of commitment to internationalizing the curriculum and the campus,” said President Shirley H. Showalter. The college’s core values also include being Christ centered and developing passionate learners, servant leaders and compassionate peacemakers.

Goshen College is also named a “least debt” college because the average debt load, among the 69 percent of students who leave college with debt, is only $15,689 – below the national average.

“We have been looking for ways to demonstrate to prospective students the value they get when they choose to enroll here. These comparisons allow them to see at a glance that we are among the highest quality ‘least debt’ colleges on the list,” said Showalter. “This shatters the myth that private education costs are beyond the reach of the average person.”

Goshen College also ranked 63rd among liberal arts colleges-bachelors for small class sizes, as 70 percent of classes enroll under 20 students.

The college rankings are based on seven indicators: peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving.

“These rankings are helpful for students and parents as they consider the important factors in their college decision-making process, particularly when it comes to narrowing their choices,” said Showalter. “However, the rankings cannot tell the whole story of an institution. They give a snapshot of a single year in statistics, but do not reveal the depth of individual experiences.”

The “national liberal arts colleges-bachelor’s” category, in which Goshen College is ranked, is defined as schools emphasizing undergraduate education and awarding at least 50 percent of its degrees in the liberal arts disciplines. Of the 217 schools in this category, most are private institutions; 21 are public.

All 2004 rankings are available on the magazine’s Web site at http://www.usnews.com/ or in the Aug. 25, 2003 issue of U.S. News & World Report.

Goshen College is a national liberal arts college known for leadership in international education, service-learning and peace and justice issues in the Anabaptist-Mennonite tradition. Recognized for its unique Study-Service Term program and exceptional educational value, GC serves about 1,000 students in both traditional and nontraditional programs. The college earned citations of excellence in U.S. News & World Report and Barron’s Best Buys in Higher Education. For more information, visit www.goshen.edu.

Editors: For more information, contact Jodi H. Beyeler at (574) 535-7572 or jodihb@goshen.edu.