Millsaps College continues to be ranked in the top tier of national liberal arts colleges according to U.S. News & World Report's 2011 edition of Best Colleges. Among other distinctions, Millsaps was also recognized in the category of "High School Counselors' Picks" based on the opinions of public high school counselors nationwide and was one of 29 institutions recognized for outstanding service learning programs in the "A Strong Focus on Student Success" listing.
"We are pleased to be recognized for academic excellence and for preparing our students for the next step in leading meaningful lives," said Millsaps President Dr. Robert W. Pearigen. "Millsaps provides a stellar academic environment along with many enriching experiences including distinctive study abroad opportunities, community service initiatives and undergraduate research activities with our nationally acclaimed faculty."
In another study, the National Survey of Student Engagement, Millsaps received outstanding marks in the "Levels of Academic Challenge" and "Student-Faculty Interaction" categories. The 2010 survey was completed by randomly selected first-year and senior students at Millsaps and results are compared with other colleges and universities nationwide.
The "Levels of Academic Challenge" measured emphasis placed on academic work, faculty standards, types of thinking required by assignments, length of papers required and challenges presented by exams. "Student-Faculty Interaction" measured topics such as faculty accessibility, research opportunities, prompt feedback and communication with faculty members.
"Although we appreciate and understand U.S. News & World Report as one ranking of our institution, we value the results of the National Survey of Student Engagement as strongly affirming our commitment to academic excellence and student success in and out of the classroom because it measures students' actual experiences," said Dr. David Davis, dean of the college.
By their senior year, 70 percent of students reported participating in internships or off-campus field experiences, 61 percent spent time with faculty members on activities other than coursework and 36 percent had worked on research projects with a faculty member.
"Undergraduate research opens a wonderful, rich window of opportunity that simply isn't possible in a traditional classroom setting. These research experiences outside the classroom provide students venues to apply the skills they have acquired to solve real world problems," said Dr. Timothy Ward, professor of chemistry and associate dean of the sciences.
For the third consecutive year, Millsaps is included in America's Best Colleges 2010, compiled by Forbes and the Center for College Affordability and Productivity. Forbes.com named Millsaps the top-ranked college in the state of Mississippi based on educational quality, student experiences and achievement of graduates.