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WIU: U.S.News Best Midwestern University

September 10, 2019

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL – For 15 years running, Western Illinois University has once again been recognized as a "Best Midwestern University" by U.S.News and World Report.

In the U.S.News and World Report 2020 rankings, of the 33 Midwestern public universities in the top tier, Western is ranked 11th in the 2020 Midwestern rankings. Western is also listed 61st of 162 public and private colleges and universities on the top tier list of "Best Regional Universities." Western is one of just three Illinois public universities appearing in the top 70.

Along with the "Best Midwestern" ranking, Western has been acknowledged by U.S.News as a "Best for Veterans School" (Midwest - #38), Best Value School" (Midwest - #49) and "Top Performer on Social Mobility" (Midwest - #49). Western is also recognized in rankings for being a top public school, graduation rates (six-year), freshmen retention rates, undergraduate business programs, undergraduate engineering program, least debt (class of 2017), highest proportion of classes under 20 students, most international students, economic diversity and campus ethnic diversity.

"I'm happy that Western has once again been highly ranked by U.S.News for the terrific academic degree programs, resources and support that we provide our students," said WIU Acting President Martin Abraham. "Our faculty, staff and administration are dedicated to ensuring our students' success. They believe in our students and are there to provide the guidance and knowledge necessary to flourish after they graduate from WIU."

The institutions appearing on the U.S.News Best Colleges ranking represent a full range of undergraduate majors and master's programs. The rankings are based on several diverse measures: graduation and retention rates, social mobility, faculty resources, expert opinion, financial resources, student excellence and alumni giving.

In addition to the U.S.News designation, Western was recently recognized earlier for the 16th consecutive year by The Princeton Review as a "Best Midwestern College," and as among the best of the best, according to the 2019 Washington Monthly College Guide, which again recognized WIU as a "Best Bang for the Buck" Midwestern school, as one of the top master's degree granting institutions in the nation and as one of America's best four-year colleges for adult learners. Western, at number 8, is in the top 10 of Midwestern colleges and universities in the "Best Bang for the Buck" rankings. In addition, WIU is also the highest ranked Illinois public master's institution in the Washington Monthly's Top 200 Master's Universities category. This is the seventh consecutive year Western has been highly ranked in the Washington Monthly College Guide.

Posted By: WIU News (
Office of University Relations