Otterbein University Recognized for Programs and Values

Posted Sep 13, 2021

Otterbein University has been collecting honors this fall, as it is recognized in national publications for its programs and values, including U.S. News & World ReportColleges of Distinction, and Washington Monthly. 

US News & World Report 

Otterbein University has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report for its academic excellence, commitment to undergraduate teaching, and focus on affordability, student success outcomes, and experiential learning. 

In the U.S. News & World Report 2022 edition of “America’s Best Colleges,” Otterbein jumped from 21st place to 12th, placing it in the top 8% among 157 peers in the Regional Universities–Midwest category.  

Additionally, Otterbein was recognized on the following lists: 

  • “Best Undergraduate Teaching” – Otterbein ranked 18, top 12% in its category. 
  • “Best Value School”- Otterbein ranked 23, top 15% in its category. 
  • “A+ School for B Students” – Otterbein was one of 26 universities in its category to receive this recognition. 
  • “Top Undergraduate Nursing Programs” – Otterbein ranked 13 out of more than 40 bachelor of science in nursing programs in Ohio; and ranked 332 out of more than 1,000 bachelor of science in nursing programs nationally. 
  • “Top Performers on Social Mobility” – Otterbein ranked 121 in its category. 

Otterbein’s focus on undergraduate teaching and experiential learning opportunities prepares its students for success in their careers, as reflected in the University’s impressive outcomes.  Even during a pandemic, the Class of 2020 reported that 96.1% were employed, enrolled in graduate school, or serving in the military within six months of graduation. 

Otterbein offers majors in high-demand careers, like nursing, and is committed to providing opportunities to students who might not realize college is attainable.  

“Our recruitment efforts demonstrate our commitment to students who are often overlooked by other universities. We see their potential and desire to continue their education, and Otterbein makes a 21st century education affordable for them. Once here, we provide extensive support to ensure they are successful in their transitions to college and their academic careers,” said Jefferson Blackburn-Smith, vice president for enrollment management. 

The entire survey can be viewed at

Colleges of Distinction 

Otterbein has once again been recognized as one of the nation’s Colleges of Distinction. Otterbein received program-specific recognition in Business, Education, Engineering, Nursing, and Career Development. 

Colleges of Distinction’s selection process consists of a review of each institution’s freshman experience and retention efforts alongside 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. 

In addition to the College of Distinction inclusion, the Field of Study badges that Otterbein earned are true marks of honor in the world of higher education, representing programs that invest in student engagement in fields that demand innovative, critical thinking. Colleges of Distinction has granted these awards after a comprehensive vetting process, individually selecting schools based on such qualities as accreditation, breadth of program, and a track record for success. More information can be found at

Voting Recognition 

Otterbein University has been named one of “America’s Best Colleges for Student Voting 2021” by Washington Monthly and a “Voter Friendly Campus” by the Campus Vote Project, led by national nonpartisan organizations Fair Elections Center’s Campus Vote Project (CVP) and NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. 

These recognitions reflect Otterbein’s high student voter registration and student voting rates, as well as its ongoing efforts led by a non-partisan, student-run campus group Raise Your Voice.