Valparaiso University’s outstanding educational value and quality academic programs earned strong recognition once again from U.S. News & World Report in its annual rankings.

The report, released on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2011, showed Valparaiso University improving its rankings in a number of areas.

In the Best Value category, Valparaiso University ranked second among regional universities in the Midwest. The value ranking takes into account an institution’s academic quality and cost of attendance.

“We are very pleased that U.S. News & World Report recognized the comprehensive and highly personalized educational experience Valparaiso University offers our students.” Valparaiso University President Mark A. Heckler said. “Academic rigor, international perspective, experiential learning and service are just some of the dimensions of the distinctive Lutheran community of learning at Valpo. This translates into tremendous value for students in their personal and professional growth.”

In addition to the Best Value ranking:

• Valparaiso University tied for fourth in the ranking of Best Regional Universities in the Midwest, a ranking that includes comprehensive institutions. Valparaiso University tied with Xavier University. These rankings take into account academic reputation, retention, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate, and alumni support. Valparaiso University placed fifth in this category a year ago, and has been identified as one of the nation’s best regional universities in the Midwest for 23 years.

• Valparaiso University’s College of Engineering finished tied for 27th place nationally among undergraduate engineering schools, an improvement of four places from the year before. The new state-of-the-art Fites Engineering Innovation Center, and the Solar Research Facility being constructed by Valpo students, are additions in the 2011-2012 school year.

• Valparaiso University was again placed on the list of A+ Schools for B Students, which measures institutions that provide opportunities for students of different academic achievement levels to thrive.

• The College of Nursing was ranked among the nation’s top 100 schools offering a master’s degree in Nursing.

The Valparaiso University educational experience focuses on both professional schools such as the nursing, engineering, and business colleges, and a respected broad-based liberal arts curriculum. Valparaiso University is also committed to providing the best value possible, with more than 90 percent of students receiving some form of financial aid, and more than $70 million in financial assistance awarded annually to undergraduates.

Valparaiso University has ranked in the top five of the quality rankings every year since 1990.

About Valparaiso University

Valparaiso University is a comprehensive university with a Lutheran heritage that enrolls approximately 4,000 students on its campus 55 miles southeast of downtown Chicago. It has been identified as one of the top master’s-level institutions in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report magazine for the past 21 years, and has received special recognition for its outstanding teaching, educational value and excellent engineering program.

More than 80 academic programs are offered through the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business Administration, Engineering and Nursing. Valpo also has a distinguished honors college (Christ College), Graduate School and Continuing Education, and Law School. Valparaiso University sponsors numerous international study opportunities and has been recognized as a model in preparing graduates with strong cross-cultural skills and global awareness, winning the Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization in 2008.