Denison University

Granville, OH
100 West College Street, Granville, OH 43023

Denison University is a private, coeducational, and residential four-year liberal arts college in Granville, Ohio, about 30 mi (48 km) east of Columbus. Founded in 1831, it is Ohio's second-oldest liberal arts college. Denison is a member of the Five Colleges of Ohio and the Great Lakes Colleges Association, and competes athletically in the NCAA Division III North Coast Athletic Conference.

On December 13, 1831, John Pratt, the college's first president, opened the doors of the Granville Literary and Theological Institution to students from throughout the Midwest. The school was founded on 17 May 1831, in Granville, Ohio, by pioneers from Granville, Massachusetts, who had recently migrated west. The founders voted to name the school after their former home in Massachusetts, and thus it became Denison University.

The school rapidly gained students and soon hired its first faculty member, the Rev. James W. Renwick, a graduate of Union College. Denison was the first college of its kind west of the Allegheny Mountains. It is notable for being the first college in Ohio, and for being the first college west of the Alleghenies to be coeducational.

In its early years, Denison was influenced by New England culture and curriculum. With the hiring of President James Freeman Clarke in 1856, the college began to pursue an independent course, adopting the liberal arts curriculum and practices of other colleges of its time. The school's first woman faculty member, Sarah Ida Shaw, was hired in 1884.

Denison began admitting women in 1894, and became fully coeducational in 1899. In 1917, the Great Lakes Colleges Association was formed, of which Denison was a founding member. In 1944, the North Coast Athletic Conference was formed, of which Denison was a founding member.

Denison University is located in Granville, Ohio, a village in Licking County, about 30 miles east of Columbus, the state capital. The village is situated on a plateau in the Appalachian foothills, about 1,500 feet above sea level. The campus comprises about 1,000 acres, including a 400-acre nature preserve.

The academic buildings are clustered around a quadrangle, with residence halls and athletic facilities located nearby. The oldest building on campus is Swasey Chapel, which was built in 1882 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Denison offers over 40 majors and 30 minors, and has a student-to-faculty ratio of 11:1. The most popular majors are economics, psychology, and communications. The average class size is 18.

Denison is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The school is a member of the Five Colleges of Ohio and the Great Lakes Colleges Association.

Denison is governed by a Board of Trustees, which includes alumni, parents, and community members. The president of the university is Dale T. Knobel, who took office in July 2005.

The school's endowment was valued at $397 million in 2017. Annual giving by alumni, parents, and friends totaled $21.6 million in 2017.

Denison is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the 73rd best national liberal arts college in the United States, and is included in their list of "Best Value Schools." The Princeton Review ranks Denison as the 12th best college in the Midwest.

Denison students come from all 50 states and more than 40 countries. The school has a strong tradition of community service, and about 80% of students participate in service-learning projects each year.

Denison offers a variety of intercollegiate, intramural, and club sports. The school's teams compete in the NCAA Division III North Coast Athletic Conference. Denison's mascot is the Big Red, and the school's colors are crimson and white.

The Denison University Big Red Marching Band is the school's marching band. The band was founded in 1887 and is the oldest collegiate marching band west of the Allegheny Mountains. The band performs at all home football games and at select away games, as well as at other campus and community events.

Denison is home to a number of student-run organizations, including the Denison Activities Board, which plans campus-wide events; the Student Government Association, which represents students in decision-making; and the Interfraternity Council, which governs the school's fraternities.

Greek life is an important part of student life at Denison, with about one-third of students participating in a fraternity or sorority. Denison's chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation's oldest academic honor society, was founded in 1887.

Denison's alumni include a Nobel Prize winner, a Pulitzer Prize winner, and a U.S. Supreme Court justice. The school has produced a number of notable athletes, including Olympic gold

Quick Facts

Type: Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above

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Annual Costs

Total Cost In-State On-Campus: $72,820

Total Cost Out-State On-Campus: $72,820

Return on Investment Rating

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The estimated cost for four years as an undergraduate at Denison University is $268475.54. This includes the average cost of attendance for four years plus the interest on the average loan over a ten year repayment minus the average of grants and scholarships per student.

We then contrast this figure with average early-career and mid-career average incomes of graduates of four year programs at Denison University. For graduates of Denison University, we saw an average early-career income of $56900.00 and mid-career income of $121000.00. We then ranked the school's value based on how many years of mid-career income it takes to repay the educational costs.