Contact: Tim Costello, director, Western Washington University Center for Service Learning, (360) 650-2503 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
BELLINGHAM – Western Washington University has been ranked 10th nationally for its service to its community and region by Washington Monthly magazine,
That ranking is part of the overall Washington Monthly rankings released in September in which Western was also ranked 35th nationally in the category of best master’s granting universities and 54th in its top 100 master list of “best bang for the buck” schools that include public and private institutions regardless of size.
“We’re honored to receive this recognition, because community service and making a positive difference in the lives of others is one of Western’s signature values. Prospective students, faculty and staff alike seek out Western because they know it’s a place where active minds are encouraged and empowered to change lives here in our local community and around the world,” said Western’s President, Bruce Shepard.
The Washington Monthly rankings are based on three overall metrics: Social Mobility, Research and Service, with Service broken down by specific rankings in items such as Peace Corps enrollment (Western was ranked first in the nation by Washington Monthly, a statistic reflected by the Peace Corps’ own ranking which placed Western as the top medium-sized university in the nation for Peace Corps enrollees), percentage of federal work-study funds spent on service, community service participation, and staff devoted to service. The “best bang for the buck” ranking is based on the percentage of students receiving Pell grants, graduation rates, net price and default rates.
“By engaging in service to the community, one of the benefits to Western students besides making a personal contribution, is a greater understanding of social issues and how we are all connected to the most fragile and vital elements of our community. Western students have a remarkable record of community participation that goes above and beyond the call of duty, and has made Whatcom County and Washington state a better place to live,” said Tim Costello, director of Western’s Center for Service Learning.
Washington Monthly is a D.C.-based national nonprofit magazine that covers politics and culture. Western’s position in its rankings rose from the #71 master’s granting university in 2012 to #35 in 2013. Western’s high ranking for service is not its first; in 2011, 2012, and 2013, Western was selected for the national President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction award, which recognizes higher education institutions across the country that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities. This year Western was the only public university in the state to receive this award.
For more information on the rankings, contact the Office of Communications and Marketing at (360) 650-3350; for more information on the University’s service-learning program, contact Tim Costello at (360) 650-2503.