For the second year in a row, Hobart and William Smith Colleges have been named the top liberal arts institution for service in Washington Monthly’s College Guide and Rankings. Since 2005, the policy magazine has rated U.S. colleges and universities based on their contributions to society, taking into consideration social mobility, research and service.
“The passion of our students, faculty and staff animates the Colleges’ commitment to service,” says HWS Director of the Center for Civic Engagement and Service Learning (CCESL) Katie Flowers. “Through service-learning courses and community-based research projects with local organizations, HWS empowers students who are civically engaged and graduates who are active, global citizens. CCESL offers dozens of programs for students to make a direct impact, and our local approach to global challenges ensures that our community and those they serve develop solutions and relationships that are enduring, rewarding and transformative.”
The Colleges’ top spot in the service category was calculated according to alum service in the Peace Corps; institutional participation in the AmeriCorps Matching Program and in Tufts University’s National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement; and the allocation of Federal Work-Study funds, $63,000 of which supported tutoring programs for local students in 2017.
Among liberal arts colleges overall, HWS ranks 42nd on the Washington Monthly list, jumping 15 places from 2017 and surpassing peer institutions such as Bucknell University, Kenyon College, Union College and Dickinson College. Besides service, criteria for the overall ranking include social mobility, which factors in graduation rates, financial data and student body diversity, and research, which includes the number of fulltime faculty, Ph.D. completion rates among graduates and institutional research spending.
These recognitions follow several other national accolades, including the Colleges’ No. 1 ranking in the country for study abroad programs for the second year in a row, according to Princeton Review, as well as 7th in best student-rated professors. This month, the 2018 edition of Forbes’ “America’s Top Colleges” also listed Hobart and William Smith among the best liberal arts colleges and among institutions with the best return-on-investment.
HWS students volunteer more than 90,000 hours annually in local, national and international communities, and generate more than $110,000 in fundraising efforts for non-profit organizations. In 2011, the Colleges spearheaded Geneva 2020, a collective impact initiative to harness the resources of the entire Geneva community in support of education for Geneva’s children, which has become an important component to HWS’ overall partnership with the City. In 2014, Hobart and William Smith were recognized as one of only four institutions to receive the President’s Award for Education Community Service.