McDaniel named in “Colleges that Change Lives”

McDaniel is among a select group of 40 higher education institutions across the nation recognized in the newly released edition of the essential guidebook, “Colleges That Change Lives.”

Prospective college students and their parents have been relying on the book’s expertise to help them look beyond the Ivies and big research universities to find the right college since 1996, when former New York Times education editor Loren Pope first published this indispensable guide to high-performing schools. McDaniel “shares two essential elements: a familial sense of communal enterprise that gets students heavily involved in cooperative rather than competitive learning, and a faculty of scholars devoted to helping young people develop their powers, mentors who often become their valued friends.”

For the 2012 edition, education journalist Hilary Masell Oswald spent a year traveling to campuses around the country to conduct her own tours and in-depth interviews, building on the legacy created by Pope, who died in 2008, to create a fully updated, more expansive guide.

The book profiles 40 colleges that excel at developing potential, values and initiative in a wide range of students. Organized into five geographic regions (Northeast, South, Midwest, Southwest, Northwest), Masell Oswald reported on pertinent details to aid families in their search, including details about admissions standards, distinguishing facts about the curriculum, extracurricular activities and educational philosophies.

According to Masell Oswald, “If you’re looking for a college free from pretense and full of genuine care, put McDaniel at the top of your list. …

“[Students] get ample help and inspiration from a team of professors who work together to boost students’ talents and aspirations. The sense of camaraderie on campus is extraordinary. …

“Every student says he or she would choose McDaniel again without hesitation. They express hope and excitement about their futures and wonder at the changes they observe in themselves.”

Each profile also includes information about the look and feel of the campus, quality of dining hall food, percentage of students who study abroad, where the school ranks in post-graduate grants and fellowships, percentage of students who go to graduate school, average SAT/ACT scores, what professors have to say about their schools, percentage of professors who have terminal degrees in their field, and even what weekend activities are available to students.

Not every college included in Pope’s original and revised 2000 editions appears in this updated 2012 “Colleges That Change Lives,” but McDaniel has been featured in every one.

“We are proud – but not at all surprised – to be included in the new edition of this guidebook,” McDaniel president Roger N. Casey said. “With 39 percent of the incoming class first-generation college students, 90 percent of our students receiving financial aid, and our dedicated faculty’s commitment to mentoring, we are the definition of a college that changes lives.”

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