Newton Kansan

Bethel College is moving up — at least in one set of rankings. The school appeared on the "Washington Monthly" rankings for "Best Baccalaureate Colleges" for the second consecutive year.

This year the school moved into third on the rankings list.

"We are truly humbled by the accolades Bethel College continues to receive for the tremendous work our people do with and for undergraduate students," said Perry White, president of Bethel College. "Such recognition is a testament to the dedication, professionalism and effectiveness of our faculty and staff as they go about the important work of this institution."

White announced in a recent convocation that Bethel College had moved up from the fourth spot on the list.

"Washington Monthly" groups institutions into four areas as defined by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, including baccalaureate colleges, which according to Carnegie comprise "schools that focus on undergraduate education but offer fewer than half of their degrees in the liberal arts."

"We designed the ‘Washington Monthly’ college rankings to embody the American higher education compact at the institutional level," the publication’s editors wrote in their introduction to this year’s rankings. "Instead of lauding colleges for closing their doors to all but an elite few, we give high marks to institutions that enroll low-income students, help them graduate and don’t charge them an arm and a leg to attend.

"Universities that bring in research dollars are rewarded by our standards, as are those whose undergraduates go on to earn PhDs. And we recognize institutions that are committed to public service, both in the way they teach and in encouraging students to enter service-focused careers.

In the 2013 rankings, Bethel was third out of 350 baccalaureate colleges, behind Elizabeth City (N.C.) State University and Tuskegee (Ala.) University.

Regionally, the next closest institutions on the "Best Baccalaureate Colleges" list were Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, No. 12, and Hastings (Neb.) College, No 14.

Next closest within Bethel’s immediate peer group was Tabor College, Hillsboro, No. 97, and Sterling College, No. 98, second and third after Bethel for all Kansas colleges and universities in all areas in the "Washington Monthly" rankings.

The complete "2013 Baccalaureate Colleges" list is online at