University News

WIU: U.S.News Best Midwestern University

September 14, 2020

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL – Western Illinois University has again been recognized as a "Best Midwestern University" by U.S.News and World Report. This is the 16th consecutive year that WIU has received the national recognition.

In the U.S.News and World Report 2021 rankings, of the 51 Midwestern public universities in the top tier, Western is ranked 13th in the 2021 Midwestern rankings. Western is also listed 60th of 157 public and private colleges and universities on the top tier list of "Best Regional Universities."

Along with the "Best Midwestern" ranking, Western has been acknowledged by U.S.News as a "Best for Veterans School" (Midwest - #40), Best Value School" (Midwest - #55) and "Top Performer on Social Mobility" (Midwest - #58). Western is also recognized in rankings for being a top public school, campus ethnic diversity, economic diversity, graduation rates (six-year), freshmen retention rates, undergraduate business programs, undergraduate engineering program, least debt (class of 2017) and highest proportion of classes under 20 students.

"The fact that Western Illinois University has been designated among the top tier of Best Midwestern Universities for 16 years speaks volumes to the educational opportunities we provide our students," said Interim President Martin Abraham. "Our mission is to provide a quality, accessible education to the citizens of this state, and beyond, and we have successfully met this mission for decades, and will continue for many years to come."

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 as a "Best Bang for the Buck" Midwestern schools, according to the 2020 Washington Monthly College Guide, as well as the highest ranked Illinois public master's institution out of 614 nationwide in the Washington Monthly's Top Master's Universities category. WIU has also been recognized for the 17th consecutive year by The Princeton Review as a "Best Midwestern College."

Posted By: WIU News (
Office of University Relations