Concordia University | FILE

For a little more than a decade, Concordia University Chicago has been recognized by the Colleges of Distinction, which ranks colleges and universities in the nation on their commitment preparing students for their future and keeping them engaged – and this year is no exception.

Since 2010, the River Forest institution has made it on the distinction list and this year nabbed five titles: 2022-23 Colleges of Distinction; 2022-23 Christian College of Distinction; 2022-23 Illinois College of Distinction; 2022-23 College of Distinction for Business and 2022-23 College of Distinction for Education, according to a press release issued by the university. This is also the fifth consecutive year that CUC’s business and education programs were honored with distinction awards.

Concordia spokesperson Eric Matanyi said the university is excited to be listed once again and receive a separate honor for the business and education programs. The 150-year-plus university was founded as a Lutheran teacher preparation college, and to be continually recognized for its oldest CUC named 2022-23 Colleges of Distinction, also recognized for education and business programs makes the award even more special, he said.

“We can tell parents and students: ‘We’re great. You should come here,’” Matanyi said. “But when somebody else says it, I think that’s what really helps a lot of students’ decisions to come to a school like Concordia or any other schools that might be [the] right [fit].”

According to the Colleges of Distinction’s site, colleges and universities are named based on four categories: student engagement, teaching, community and outcomes. That means, it takes a closer look at whether academic programs lend to students’ careers or vocation, offers activities and campus life beyond the classroom, relationships between faculty and students, and opportunities post-graduation. 

“Those are not only things that we’re proud of here on Concordia’s campus, but I think things that are important to students and to parents when they’re choosing a university,” he said.

In Illinois, a total of 18 colleges and universities were selected as 2022-23 Colleges of Distinction along with hundreds more around the country. Aside from CUC, Elmhurst College, DePaul University, University of Illinois at Chicago and Illinois State University are just a few among the many. For a complete list and more information, visit

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