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DeSales University Named a College of Distinction

by Janelle Hill Jun 16, 2020

What defines the college experience? For Colleges of Distinction, a one-of-a-kind guide for college-bound students, it all comes down to four key factors—student engagement, teaching, community, and outcomes.

The guide is out with its coveted list of the 2020-2021 Colleges of Distinction, and it’s recognizing DeSales University for its commitment to student success and satisfaction. 

“We are tremendously proud of our faculty and staff whose commitment, hard work, and creativity have earned us this impressive ranking. Our students' ever-growing appreciation for the care of their teachers, coaches, directors, and mentors makes this achievement even more significant. I am grateful that our rich Catholic identity and strong academic programs are so widely acclaimed.”  

 Father James Greenfield, OSFS ’84, president of DeSales

Founder Wes Creel created Colleges of Distinction back in 2000 as a tool to help students and their parents navigate the process of choosing the right school. Instead of relying on metrics like peer reputation, endowment size, and alumni salaries, Creel decided to focus on the student experience. 

As part of its selection process, Colleges of Distinction conducts in-depth research and interviews with institutions about their freshman experience and retention efforts, along with other focus areas including general education programs, career development, strategic planning, and student satisfaction.

“Each school is different, just as every student is different,” says Creel. “There is no number-one college for everyone, so we never rank those in our cohort. It’s inspiring to see DeSales University commit to the learning styles and community involvement that will best allow its students to thrive.”


Since 2000, Colleges of Distinction has been committed to honoring schools throughout the U.S. for true excellence in higher education. The member schools within the Colleges of Distinction consortium distinguish themselves through their dedicated focus on the undergraduate experience. Its website provides dynamic college profiles, customized tools, and resources for students, parents, and high school counselors. For more information, visit