Oglethorpe University is ranked among Washington Monthly’s top 2020 liberal arts colleges and recognized as a Best Bang for the Buck in the Southeast, an “exclusive list of schools that best help non-wealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices.”
The annual college guide measures schools based on what they are doing for the country and on their contribution to “the public good” in three broad categories: social mobility, research, and promoting public service. The publication uses data on student outcomes from the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard.
To assess a school’s impact on social mobility, or recruiting and graduating low-income students, Washington Monthly looks at net price, student economic outcomes, and student loan repayment rate.
Research, or producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs, is measured for liberal arts colleges by the number of alumni who go on to get PhDs.
A school’s contribution to service, or encouraging students to give something back to their country, is evaluated by examining student military service, alumni national service in the Peace Corps, and the percentage of federal work-study grant money spent on community service projects.
For the “Best Bang for the Buck” ranking, a number of factors are considered, including graduation rate, the number of Pell graduates, percentage of first-generation students, median earnings 10 years after entering college, predicted median earnings 10 years after entering college, and net price of attendance for families earning below $75,000.