Hidden Gem: Denison University
Are you interested in the small liberal arts college experience, but don’t want to attend one of the same few schools everyone is applying to? Consider Denison University. Located in Granville Ohio, 30 minutes outside Columbus, Denison has a beautiful hilltop campus, designed by Central Park’s architect, Frederick Law Olmsted. Strong academics, a great sense of community, and high athletic participation and enthusiasm characterize the Denison experience.
- Total enrollment is 2,250, and will deliberately remain low to enable close student teacher relationships (9:1 ratio), and small classes (50% have fewer than 18 students).
- Relationships between students and faculty are very strong, with an emphasis on faculty mentorship. 93% of students develop a strong mentorship relationship with a faculty member.
- Denison offers over 50 majors and five pre-professional programs, and recently added five new majors in Data Analytics, Global Commerce, Narrative Non-fiction, Financial Economics, and Health, Exercise and Sports Studies.
- A Denison graduate recently donated over $12 million to invest in financial aid and career outcomes. The Knowlton Center for Career Exploration brings alumni back to campus to discuss real world challenges with students, such as salary negotiations, how to dress for success, and more.
- Student life includes very strong Division III athletic teams, with men’s Swimming and Diving winning last year’s DIII national championships. Over 73% of Denison students play varsity, club or intramural sports.
- Denison upholds many campus traditions including an annual Gala each fall, a major concert each semester, and a D-Day concert each year, for which the performer is a surprise to student body.
- Denison’s acceptance rate was 36% in 2017, its lowest ever. The school emphasizes “fit” with its community, and values demonstrated interest.
- Denison is test-optional, but over 80% of applicants submit test scores.
- Students come from all 50 US states, 40 countries, 80% from outside Ohio, and 32% describe themselves as multi-ethnic.
- Denison’s $800 million endowment places it in the top 1-2% of colleges for endowment size, and allows it to offer generous financial aid packages as well as many merit scholarships.
Educational Advocates clients who are interested in small liberal arts schools such as Lafayette, Colby, or Hamilton, but who may not quite meet their academic or tuition requirements, should investigate Denison University, where your geographic diversity, the slightly less competitive admissions landscape, and the potential for merit aid may enable you to get an outstanding liberal arts education and college experience.