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Top Catholic Colleges and Universities

A List of 23 of the Best Catholic Colleges and Universities in the U.S.

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The schools below have been selected for a range of factors including reputation, retention rates, graduation rates, academic quality, value and curricular innovations. The colleges and universities vary widely in size, location and mission, so I have not tried to force any kind of arbitrary ranking on them. Instead, I simply list them alphabetically.

Compare Top Catholic Colleges: SAT Scores | ACT Scores

Boston College

Boston College Campus
Juthamas / Flickr
  • Location: Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts
  • Enrollment: 14,621 (9,860 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Explore the Campus: Boston College Photo Tour
  • Description: Boston College was founded in 1863 by the Jesuits, and today it is one of the oldest Jesuit university in the U.S., and the Jesuit university with the largest endowment. The campus is distinguished by its stunning Gothic architecture, and the college has a partnership with beautiful St. Ignatius Church. The school always places high on rankings of national universities. The undergraduate business program is particularly strong. BC has a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. The Boston College Eagles compete in the NCAA Division 1-A Atlantic Coast Conference.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Boston College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Boston College

College of the Holy Cross

College of the Holy Cross
GeorgeThree / Flickr
  • Location: Worcester, Massachusetts
  • Enrollment: 2,847 (all undergraduate)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Holy Cross has an impressive retention and graduation rate, with well over 90% of entering students earning a degree within six years. The college was awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa for its strengths in the liberal arts and sciences, and the school's 10 to 1 student / faculty ratio means that students will have a lot of personal interaction with their professors.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the College of the Holy Cross profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Holy Cross

Creighton University

Creighton University
White & Blue Review / Flickr
  • Location: Omaha, Nebraska
  • Enrollment: 7,051 (4,087 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Creighton has a 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio. Biology and nursing are the most popular undergraduate majors. Creighton frequently ranks #1 among Midwest master's universities in U.S. News & World Report, and the school also wins high marks for its value. On the athletic front, the Creighton Bluejays compete in the NCAA Division I Missouri Valley Conference.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Creighton University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Creighton

Fairfield University

Fairfield University Chapel
WalkingGeek / Flickr
  • Location: Fairfield, Connecticut
  • Enrollment: 5,128 (4,084 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Fairfield strong international programs and has produced a surprising number of Fulbright Scholars. Fairfield's strengths in the liberal arts and sciences earned the school a chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society, and the university's Dolan School of Business is also well regarded. In athletics, the Fairfield Stags compete in the NCAA Division I Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Fairfield University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Fairfield

Fordham University

Fordham University
roblisameehan / Flickr
  • Location: Bronx, New York
  • Enrollment: 14,448 (7,652 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Fordham University's main campus sits next to the Bronx Zoo and the Botanical Garden. Fordham The school has a 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio and an average class size of 22. For its strengths in the liberal arts and sciences, the university was awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. Preprofessional programs in business and communication studies are most popular among undergraduates. In athletics, the Fordham Rams compete in the NCAA Division I Athletic 10 Conference except for the football team which competes in the Patriot League.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Fordham University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Fordham

Georgetown University

Georgetown University
tvol / Flickr
  • Location: Washington, D.C.
  • Enrollment: 14,826 (7,038 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Georgetown's location in the capital has contributed to its sizable international student population and the popularity of the International Relations major. Over half of Georgetown students take advantage of the many study abroad opportunities, and the university recently opened a campus in Qatar. For strengths in the liberal arts and sciences, Georgetown was awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. On the athletic front, the Georgetown Hoyas compete in the NCAA Division I Big East Conference. Established in 1789, Georgetown is the oldest Jesuit university in the country.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Georgetown University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Georgetown

Gonzaga University

Gonzaga University
Christine Salek / Flickr
  • Location: Spokane, Washington
  • Enrollment: 6,873 (4,385 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Gonzaga, like many Catholic universities, focuses on the education of the whole person -- mind, body and spirit. The university ranks highly among Master's institutions in the West. On the athletic front, the Gonzaga Bulldogs compete in the NCAA Division I West Coast Conference. The basketball team has met with notable success.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Gonzaga University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Gonzaga

Loyola Marymount University

Loyola Marymount University Chapel
Adan Garcia / Flickr
  • Location: Los Angeles, California
  • Enrollment: 8,977 (5,766 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Explore the Campus: LMU Photo Tour
  • Description: Loyola Marymount University is the largest Catholic university on the West Coast. The school has an average undergraduate class size of 18 and a 13 to 1 student / faculty ratio. Undergraduate student life is active with 144 clubs and organizations and 15 national Greek fraternities and sororities. In athletics, the LMU Lions compete in the NCAA Division I West Coast Conference.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Loyola Marymount University profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Loyola Marymount

Loyola University Chicago

Loyola University Chicago
Special*Dark / Flickr
  • Location: Chicago, Illinois
  • Enrollment: 15,545 (9,950 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Loyola University in Chicago is the largest Jesuit college in the country. Loyola's business school frequently does well in national rankings, and the university's strengths in the liberal arts and sciences have earned it a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. Loyola occupies some prime real estate in Chicago, with a northern campus on the Chicago waterfront and a downtown campus just off the Magnificent Mile. In athletics, the Loyola Ramblers competes in the NCAA Division I Horizon League.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Loyola University Chicago profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Loyola Chicago

Loyola University Maryland

Loyola College of Maryland Business School
Crhayes88 / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Baltimore, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 6,028 (3,580 undergraduates)
  • Order: Jesuit
  • Description: Loyola University is located on a 79-acre campus just down the road from Johns Hopkins University. Among all the undergraduate majors, the preprofessional programs in business and communication studies are by far the most popular. Loyola University is proud of its 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio, and its average class size of 25. In athletics, the Loyola Greyhounds compete in the NCAA Division I Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, with women's lacrosse competing as an associate member of the Big East Conference.
  • For acceptance rates, standardized test scores, costs and more information, visit the Loyola University Maryland profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Loyola Maryland
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