Washington College Remains a Top 100 Liberal Arts College


The annual U.S. News & World Report rankings place the College 93rd in the nation among liberal arts schools.

The Casey Academic Center behind flowering plants on Martha Washington Square

The annual U.S. News & World Report college rankings were released on Monday, Sept. 18, and they once again placed Washington College among the 100 best national liberal arts institutions in the country. In addition to placing 93rd among liberal arts schools, the College received the same ranking on the list of Best Value Schools and was 106th among Top Performers on Social Mobility.

“Our focus remains on the quality of the Washington College educational experience, and it is gratifying when our efforts receive this kind of affirmation,” said President Mike Sosulski. “Being recognized among the top 100 national liberal arts colleges really is a well-deserved acknowledgment of the excellence seen among our faculty, students, staff, and alumni.”

The U.S. News & World Report rankings examine more than 1,800 colleges and universities throughout the country. For the primary rankings, Washington College is evaluated alongside other schools focused on undergraduate education that issue more than half of their degrees in the arts and sciences. A dozen criteria are considered, with the greatest weight being given to peer assessments and graduation rates. New data and criteria were included this year related to socioeconomic diversity and outcomes of graduates. 

Best Value Schools were identified by the academic quality (represented by the U.S. News ranking) relative to the 2022-23 cost for a student receiving the average amount of aid. Colleges were compared within their own categories, so national liberal arts schools were evaluated separately from national universities and regional colleges and universities. Only the best 50% in each category were considered for the best value rankings, since high academic quality is the essential factor for value.

The Top Performers on Social Mobility rankings recognized schools for their success in just two specific criteria contributing to the overall rankings: the graduation rates of Pell Grant recipients, and how that rate compared to rates of non-Pell grant recipients. Both were adjusted so schools with larger Pell Grant populations got “much more credit,” according to U.S. News & World Report. (Pell Grants are awarded by the federal government, with the vast majority going to students whose families have gross adjusted incomes below $50,000.)