Inside The Awards – Best Value Schools

On most university websites, you will find a section dedicated to the awards and accolades that the school has earned. (If you’re inclined, Park’s list of accolades can be found here.) Some awards assess the overall impression of an institution, some focus on the success of individual departments and programs, while still others evaluate how well the needs of particular student populations are met. No matter the focus, the recognition of the hard work put in by our faculty and staff is always appreciated.

But among the awards that Park has earned, our most recent honor stands apart. Park University was named one of the first-ever recipients of the Best Value School award from University Research & Review. A team of higher education experts evaluated more than 3,000 colleges and universities throughout the nation, looking at factors like net cost, programs offered, and the institution’s reputation among students and alumni.

“Wait,” you’re probably asking. “That sounds like a lot of other awards, doesn’t it?”

What makes this award unique is that the committee’s evaluation goes beyond the numbers to dig into the real life of an institution.

“There has to be something special about a school,” said Joseph Schmoke, founder of University Research & Review. “The students have to love it, and the top administrators must exhibit a passion for their mission.”

In addition to traditional metrics-based evaluation, the selection committee actively seeks input from students in real life. Online comments and reviews – both positive and negative – are compiled and evaluated. From there, committee members reach out to current students and alumni, getting the “real world” view of an institution. Only after this process is complete can a school be named a Best Value School.

So what makes this award unique is that we earned it only as a result of your satisfaction.

And for that, we say thank you.

Trophy Presentation

Joe Schmoke (l), founder of University Research & Review, presents the Best Value School award to Clarinda Creighton, associate vice president for student affairs and Jerry Jorgensen, Ph.D., provost and senior vice president.