Each year, national publications and guidebooks rank Whitman among the top colleges and universities in the country. Whitman is known for attracting students who represent the Whitman mosaic – down-to-earth, high achievers with diverse interests. The college’s academic excellence and engaging community continue to drive rankings, which reflect the value of a Whitman liberal arts education.

“The level to which a Whitman education profoundly benefits the intellectual and personal development of our students cannot be fully portrayed through external rankings,” said Whitman President George Bridges. “However, it is gratifying to be consistently recognized as one of the top schools in the nation by these respected publications.”

Here is a summary to date of the 2012-13 rankings. Watch this page for updates as more rankings information is released in the coming weeks.

The Princeton Review

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Whitman is featured in the 2013 edition of The Princeton Review’s “Best 377 Colleges,” guidebook, and is included in nine of the publication’s Top 20 lists.

  • Best Classroom Experience – No. 5
  • Best Health Services – No. 11
  • Their Students Love This College – No. 12
  • LGBT-Friendly – No. 12
  • Best Quality of Life – No. 15
  • Everybody Plays Intramural Sports – No. 15
  • Best-Run College – No. 17
  • Professors Get High Marks – No. 18
  • Most Accessible Professors – No. 20
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Whitman is also included in The Princeton Review's 2013 "Best Value Colleges" list. The list spotlights 75 public and 75 private colleges. It does not rank schools beyond the top 10. Best Value colleges "provide stellar academics with a modest price tag" either by keeping costs low or offsetting the price of tuition with generous financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, work-study and loans. Schools are selected for inclusion in The Best Value Colleges: 2013 Edition based on institutional data and student opinion surveys from the academic year 2011-2012. 


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Forbes lists Whitman at No. 4 among liberal arts colleges in the West, behind only Pomona, Claremont McKenna and Colorado College. Whitman is also No. 39 among private colleges and No. 44 overall on the Forbes “America’s Top Colleges” list.


U.S. News and World Report

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U.S. News and World Report ranks Whitman No. 43 in the nation and lists it among colleges with the lowest average total indebtedness.  The report has spotlighted Whitman as a “hands-on experience” and a college where students “stay involved with campus life.”

Washington Monthly

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Based on measures related to social mobility, research and service, Washington Monthly ranks Whitman No. 30 in the nation in its College Guide.


Colleges That Change Lives

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Whitman is included in the newest edition of Colleges that Change Lives – 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About Education, by Loren Pope and revised by Hilary Masell Oswald. Among topics considered: The look and feel of the campus, quality of dining hall food, percentage of students who study abroad, percentage of students who go to grad school, average SAT/ACT scores and what professors have to say about their schools.



The Peace Corps

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Whitman is ranked No. 8 this year among small colleges and universities that produce the highest number of Peace Corps volunteers. Sixteen Whitman graduates are currently serving overseas in the Peace Corps; more than 300 Whitman alumni have served since the founding of the Peace Corps by President John F. Kennedy in 1961. This is the fifth time Whitman has appeared on the annual "Top Colleges" list since 2003. Read more about the Peace Corps ranking here


Teach For America

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Whitman has been named one of the top 20 small colleges and universities to contribute graduates to Teach For America, a selective corps of recent college graduates who commit to teaching at underserved public schools in low-income areas. This is the third time in the last five years that Whitman has numbered among top contributors to the program. Twelve Whitman graduates of the Class of 2012 are currently serving as corps members in schools across the country.

The Alumni Factor

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Whitman is among 177 colleges and universities to receive top recognition by The Alumni Factor, a rankings institution that uses alumni feedback to generate data. Rankings are based on criteria such as alumni giving, graduation rate, average net worth of alumni and willingness of alumni to recommend their alma mater to prospective students.



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Whitman is the top-ranked college in Washington State and ranks No. 53 nationally according to StateUniversity.com, which bases its rankings on a mathematical comparison of key statistical data as opposed to surveys. The most important factors in the rankings are ACT/SAT scores, student retention, faculty salary, and student/faculty ratio. For more information about StateUniversity.com, click here.