University of Dubuque Honored Among National Colleges of Distinction

Jul 9, 2018

College of Distinction 2018-19

DUBUQUE, Iowa – For the second consecutive year, the University of Dubuque has been recognized as one of the nation’s Colleges of Distinction and earned special recognition for its business, education, and nursing programs.

UD has proven itself to be at the forefront of American higher education with a modern, student-centered approach to teaching.

“The Colleges of Distinction recognition is an external affirmation of the strong educational experience we offer at the University of Dubuque, forming students of competence, character, and conviction,” said Mark Ward, PhD, vice president for academic affairs at UD. “Like UD, Colleges of Distinction focuses on measures of student engagement in college that lead to employment and lives of purpose after college.”

With a unique learning environment, the university’s programming engages students with character-building first-year seminars, service-learning programs, undergraduate research, common intellectual experiences, capstones projects, study abroad programs, and internships.

“We are absolutely thrilled to recognize University of Dubuque as a College of Distinction for its effective dedication to student success,” said Tyson Schritter, chief operating officer for Colleges of Distinction. “Colleges of Distinction is so impressed with UD’s curriculum, which is enriched with the kind of high-impact educational practices that are most crucial for student development. Such innovative engagement is preparing the next generation of young adults to thrive after college.”

Colleges of Distinction’s selection process consists of a review of each institution’s first-year student experience and retention efforts in addition to its general education programs, alumni success, strategic plan, student satisfaction, and more. Schools are accepted on the basis that they adhere to the Four Distinctions: Engaged Students, Great Teaching, Vibrant Community, and Successful Outcomes.

“Colleges of Distinction is far more than a ranking list of colleges and universities,” Schritter said. “We seek out the schools that are wholly focused on the student experience, constantly working to produce graduates who are prepared for a rapidly changing global society. Now recognized as a College of Distinction, University of Dubuque stands out in the way it strives to help its students to learn, grow, and succeed.”

Since 2000, the Colleges of Distinction website and guidebook have honored schools throughout the United States for their excellence in undergraduate-focused higher education. The cohort of schools in the Colleges of Distinction consortium distinguishes themselves through their focus on the undergraduate experience. The website and annual guidebooks provide dynamic college profiles, customized tools, and resources for students, parents, and high school counselors. For more information, please visit