Valpo honored again as No. 2 in Midwest for Best Undergraduate Teaching

 For the 26th straight year, Valparaiso University has been identified as one of the best universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report magazine. In the 2015 edition, released today, Valpo is the No. 5 Best Regional University, among more than 140 universities in the category, and is ranked No. 2 in the Midwest for Best Undergraduate Teaching.

“We are honored to once again be recognized by U.S. News & World Report for the exceptional education at Valparaiso University,” said Mark A. Heckler, Ph.D., University president. “This achievement reflects the steadfast focus on exceptional quality as we continue to develop cutting-edge academic programs, expand campus infrastructure, and enroll outstanding students who will carry on the Valpo legacy.”

Parking garage to open late 2014

Valparaiso University has officially taken possession of the former Porter Hospital property and will restore the parking structure for use in fall 2014.

Following extensive environmental analysis, Valpo announced plans to recondition the parking ramp, improve lighting, and install security cameras between now and November. The site will provide additional parking for student and athletic events, including home basketball games. A walkway will be constructed to connect the ramp and the Athletics-Recreation Center, and new lighting will be installed to enhance the path.

“The acquisition of this property moves Valparaiso University forward in alignment with the Strategic Plan and supports its growth initiatives,” said John A. Palmucci Jr., senior vice president for finance and administration.

Valparaiso University’s Brauer Museum of Art continues to grow its permanent collection with major acquisitions from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. These, along with prints, sculptures, paintings and other works from artists from around the world comprise an exciting 2014-2015 season, which kicks off with an opening reception Sept 5.

The fall exhibitions run through Dec. 14, with selections from the permanent collection on display in the Sloan Gallery. In the Wehling and McGill Galleries, “Orange Meditations: Recent Sculpture by Herbert George” features technically exquisite and formally inventive stone sculptures that reflect the artist’s ongoing interest in themes of justice and humanity.

Andrew Nunemaker ’91, an influential entrepreneur and philanthropist who serves on Valpo’s Board of Directors, has assembled a remarkable collection that demonstrates his interest in both the diverse approaches of the contemporary scene and the Modern masters. The West Gallery features selections from this impressive collection.

Valparaiso University expects to welcome nearly 1,000 new undergraduate students when classes begin Tuesday for the fall 2014 semester. Valpo anticipates total enrollment will be nearly 4,525 — the largest in 34 years.

“It’s an exciting time of positive momentum at Valpo, and we continue to recruit, enroll and retain remarkable students of outstanding character,” said Michael Joseph, vice president of Enrollment Management.

Valpo anticipates total enrollment growth across disciplines, despite national trends in higher education. The University expects to enroll 500 new students in the College of Arts and Sciences, 125 new students in the College of Business, 125 new students in the College of Engineering, and 215 new students in the College of Nursing and Health Professions.

Washington Monthly has named Valparaiso University the No. 3 master’s university in the country in this prestigious ranking. According to the magazine’s system, colleges are ranked by their contribution to the country, and it recognizes institutions that provide an outstanding education while maintaining affordability.

Criteria include cutting-edge research and scholarship, recruiting and graduating low-income students and commitment to service. The rankings include community service hours relative to school size, and at Valpo students annually perform more than 90,000 hours of community service. The ranking is also based upon the number of alumni who serve in the Peace Corps and ROTC.

Valparaiso University will offer “Kinder lernen Deutsch”, a German language and culture program sponsored by the Kade-Duesenberg German House and Cultural Center, to elementary school students during the academic year.

Children will learn German through fun activities, songs, and games taught by Valpo undergraduate students and supervised by Professor Sarah DeMaris. Two classes will be available; one for beginners in first grade and one for children who participated in a previous year.

Inaugural sessions explore “What is the Good Life?” through classic literature

The Masterworks Program at Christ College, sponsored by Valparaiso University’s interdisciplinary honors college as well as the Graduate School, offers exciting continuing education opportunities for members of the larger Valparaiso community.

An opportunity to discover and re-visit classic texts, The Masterworks Program offers an intellectual, discussion-based atmosphere rooted in the Christ College tradition of intimate, dynamic seminars.

Valparaiso University has achieved recognition by Forbes 2014 rankings as one of the top 100 colleges in the Midwest and regularly appears in Forbes Magazine’s “America’s Top Colleges” list.

Forbes rankings are calculated by the Center for College Affordability & Productivity and are highlighted in the August 2014 issue of Forbes Magazine. According to Forbes, postgraduate success is the most important measure of its annual ranking. Schools that demonstrate excellent return on investment rank high on the list, and at Valparaiso University graduate placement has exceeded 90 percent for 21 consecutive years.

Valparaiso University alumnus Jonathan Rudy ’10 achieved the highest honor at the 2014 Young Artists Competition in Organ Performance on June 23 in Boston.

As First Prize winner of one of the nation’s most prestigious organ competitions, Rudy has the opportunity to gain career development assistance through Karen McFarlane Artists Inc., the premier management for concert organists in the United States. He is also the recipient of the $3,000 Lilian Murtagh Memorial Prize, funded by Karen McFarlane Artists Inc.

“I am very pleased and proud of Jonathan,” said Lorraine Brugh, Ph.D., associate professor of music and director of Chapel music. “It is an accomplishment few achieve, and I see this as a real turning point of his career. He is intelligent, and he possesses a very natural sense of musicianship.”

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