Saint Anselm Breaks Top 100 in U.S. News Rankings

September 10, 2018

By Michelle Adams O'Regan

For the first time ever, Saint Anselm College has been ranked in the top 100 best national liberal arts colleges in U.S. News & World Report's Best Colleges. In the 2019 edition released today, the college was #95 out of just under 1,400 schools defined as those that emphasize undergraduate education and award at least half their degrees in the arts and sciences. When first included in Best Colleges in 2011, Saint Anselm was ranked #139; last year the college was #106.

In its 34th year, U.S. News & World Report uses factors in their methodology such as average freshman retention rate (89 percent for Saint Anselm) and six-year graduation rate (80 percent for Saint Anselm). Assessments by high school counselors and student selectivity metrics, such as SAT scores and number of students in the top 10 percent of their high school classes, are also reflected in the rankings.

According to Vice President for Enrollment and Dean of Admission Eric Nichols, the biggest drivers for the college’s rise were increases in retention and graduation rates, and improved selectivity measures.

“To be included in the top 100 liberal arts schools in the country is an outstanding achievement. This recognition is reflective of the efforts of the entire campus community, from the Admission staff who have recruited increasingly academically qualified classes, to the Student Affairs professionals who have helped to retain our students at record high levels in recent years, and of course, our first-class faculty who engage with them every day both in and out of the classroom,” says Nichols.

College president Dr. Steven R. DiSalvo also praised the Saint Anselm community, saying in an email, “With consistent dedication to academic excellence, we have continued to rise to take our place among the top 100 schools in the country. This is an achievement of which every Anselmian should be proud, as it was made possible by the combined dedicated efforts of every member of our community to always serve the needs and best interests of our students.”

Best Colleges also includes the college on its "A+ Schools for B Students" list, which distinguishes the college as seeking "a broad and engaged student body" where “individuality and seriousness of purpose” count. The list acknowledges that Saint Anselm has a learning environment where more average students who demonstrate determination and hardworking commitment have the opportunity to thrive. Saint Anselm is also included on the “Best Value Schools” list, which takes into account both academic quality and cost, including only schools from the top half of the Best Colleges rankings lists.

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