Sept. 9, 2019

Sept. 9, 2019

Presidential message

As we prepare to celebrate Mission Week, and our rich and diverse Jesuit, Catholic heritage, I would like to share some good news regarding our recent rankings in national publications and offer a final invitation to join me at tomorrow’s Presidential Town Hall, at which we will present the inaugural Kingfisher Award.

This morning, U.S. News & World Report released its annual “Best Colleges” rankings. I am pleased to report that, in our first year in the prestigious National Universities category, Creighton University is ranked 104th. Of the approximately 1,900 four-year colleges and universities nationwide ranked by U.S. News, only 399 (or about 20%) are classified as National Universities.

These universities are recognized by U.S. News for offering a full range of undergraduate majors, plus master’s and doctoral programs, as well as for producing groundbreaking research.

Ranking in the top third of national colleges and universities in our inaugural year in the category marks a significant milestone in the history of Creighton University, and is a testament to our high-caliber students, alumni, faculty, staff, and programs.

As you will recall, earlier this year, the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education elevated Creighton from the Master’s Colleges and Universities category to the newly created Doctoral/Professional Universities category – to more accurately reflect our professional practice doctorate programs in nursing, medicine, dentistry, law, pharmacy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy.

The Carnegie classifications are used by U.S. News & World Report in its annual rankings, and resulted in Creighton being moved from the Midwest category – where we had been recognized as No. 1 for 16 consecutive years – to the more prestigious national listing. This recategorization also more aptly represents our standing among our peer institutions and our continued commitment to research and scholarly activity on a national and international level.

In addition to our overall ranking, U.S. News also ranks Creighton 63rd nationally in terms of being a best-value school, 23rd for best undergraduate teaching, 69th as a best college for veterans, 14th for service-learning opportunities, 90th for best business programs, and 21st for internship opportunities.

Last week, Creighton also was recognized in the Wall Street Journal /Times Higher Education 2020 U.S. College Ranking. While the U.S. News rankings focus more on student metrics, this measurement focuses more intentionally on academics and research, including data from Elsevier, a global information analytics business specializing in science and health. The methodology explores four key performance areas: resources, engagement, outcomes, and environment. Creighton ranks 127th out of 801 institutions in the most recent survey. Notably, our score for academic reputation increased significantly.

Looking ahead, our continued strategic efforts – particularly around enhancing stewardship of financial resources, student graduation and retention rates, and scholarship opportunities for low-income students – will not only strengthen our University but should factor favorably into future national rankings.

Finally, I invite you to attend the Presidential Town Hall tomorrow, from 3:30-4:30 p.m., in the Harper Center’s Hixson-Lied Auditorium. The event also will be livestreamed.

I look forward to officially introducing our new rector of the Jesuit community, the Rev. Nicholas Santos, SJ, PhD, and our new academic deans, Joshua Fershée, JD, of the School of Law, and Evan Robinson, PhD, of the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions, as well as  announcing the names of the two new holders of the Anna and Donald Waite Endowed Chair in Jesuit Education for 2019-2020.

I also will share information on our fiscal year 2020 budget, and provide an update on the excellent work of our task forces focused on strategic initiatives around collaborative health care education, undergraduate enrollment, life-long learning, community engagement, and stewardship. Additionally, an incentive program for research and coursework development will be outlined.

Join me, too, as we celebrate and honor our first recipient of the Kingfisher Award – which recognizes a deserving faculty or staff member who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the enduring values, principles, and practices of the humanities. A reception will follow the event in the Ahmanson Ballroom.

I hope to see you there.


Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ, PhD