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Rankings & Recognitions

We're very proud to be ranked as one of the best colleges of our type in the nation.

 In fact, Catawba was ranked higher in both of the latest U.S. News & World Report's "Best Colleges" and Forbes' "America's Top Colleges" guides.

View our current college rankings below:



U.S. News & World Report 's Best Colleges

For the sixth straight year, Catawba College is ranked among the Top 10 Best Colleges in the South, according to the 2022 edition of "Best Colleges," published by U.S.News & World Report.


Colleges of Distinction

Innovative application of high impact educational practices at Catawba College earned the school recognition among the nation's Colleges of Distinction. Already recognized by Colleges of Distinction for its innovative approach to education, Catawba College has also been honored for its expert blending of the liberal arts with professional programming in Business and Education.


The Princeton Review's Best Colleges

Catawba College is again cited as one of the nation's best colleges in The Princeton Review Best 387 Colleges guide 2022 edition.


Forbes' Grateful Graduates Index 

Catawba College continues to be among only a handful of North Carolina institutions making Forbes' Grateful Graduates Index 2019. In N.C., Catawba ranked 106 on the index which ranks the best long-term value or return on investment (ROI) of the top private, not-for-profit colleges with more than 500 students. The Index evaluates the value of a four-year college education on just one variable, alumni giving, and ranks colleges that best produce happy and successful grads who give back.


Forbes' America's Top Colleges 

Catawba is once again listed among the North Carolina public and private institutions included in Forbes' "America's Top Colleges 2018," on their list of the 650 best undergraduate colleges. This is the eighth consecutive year that Catawba has been named a top college by Forbes.


N.C.'s Best Value Colleges

Catawba is ranked 19th among private colleges in North Carolina as one of the 30 best value colleges and universities in the state in 2018 by Online Communications' 


Best Colleges & Universities in North Carolina

Catawba ranked #16 among the best colleges and universities in North Carolina by College Consensus.


N.C.'s Safest Colleges

Catawba was cited among the "Safest Colleges in North Carolina" in 2018. The ranking is based on key statistics and student reviews using data from the U.S. Department of Education. Top-ranked colleges offer a safe and healthy environment with little or no campus crime, drugs, or alcohol usage.


Among the "Best Bang for the Buck" Colleges

Catawba College continues to be heralded as one of the country’s colleges that delivers the “Best Bang for the Buck,” according to the 2018 Washington Monthly College Guide and Rankings released the final week of August. Catawba was ranked 93 among of 279 higher education institutions across the Southeast in this category, because it “helps non-wealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices.”


Best Music Schools

Again this year, Catawba has been named one of the nation's Best Music Schools by In Tune magazine's listing of The Best Music Schools  for 2017.

We are also ranked #2 among the Top Colleges for Music Majors in N.C. by Zippia.


The Princeton Review's "Great College Theatre" List

Catawba is recognized as one of only 50 institutions included in the The Princeton Review's list of schools with Great College Theater based on student ratings of their campus theater productions. This reflects Catawba’s longstanding recognition by The Princeton Review of our strong theater program.


Top Colleges for Biology Majors

Catawba was ranked 6th among the Top Colleges for Biology Majors in North Carolina, according to Zippia.


Best Psychology Degrees

Catawba was ranked among the most affordable small colleges for a psychology degree in the U.S. by Best Psychology Degrees.


Most Affordable Sports Management Degrees

Catawba was ranked among the most affordable small southern colleges for a Sports Management degree in the U.S. by


The Princeton Review's Green Colleges

Catawba College has been named to The Princeton Review’s 2021 Top 50 Green Colleges list. The Princeton Review noted Catawba’s “well-rounded education grounded in the liberal arts, a commitment to environmental sustainability, and classes structured around current events.” 

Catawba is one of the country's most environmentally responsible colleges, according to The Princeton Review. Catawba was named again to The Princeton Review's 2018 Green Colleges.


Creative Colleges

In the 2017 edition of "Creative Colleges," Catawba College is again included as one of the college options for all arts majors across the board. This guidebook contends that students are 100% unique, and their college should be too.