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UNH Again Named a College of Distinction

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Not long after graduating, Tristan Cowan ’14, an electrical engineering major, secured a job as an electromechanical engineer at APT Technology, a company that manufacturers measurement and control equipment for oil drilling.

The success of graduates such as Tristan Cowan '14 has led to UNH again being named a College of Distinction.

“UNH has done a great deal for me,” she said. “Earning a degree in a field I’m passionate about has changed the track of my life.”

One of her classmates, Nic Perreault ’14, a fire science major, recently moved to Charlotte, N.C., to start his career as an evidence technician at Unified Investigations and Sciences.

“I am proud to have gone to the University of New Haven, to help set up a fantastic future,” he said.

Successful outcomes of its graduates is one of the reasons why UNH was named – for the fourth year in a row – a “College of Distinction” by Colleges of Distinction, a national online higher education guide that also assesses colleges for its engaged students, great teaching and vibrant campus communities.

Colleges of Distinction looks beyond rankings and test scores to find colleges that are the ideal places to learn, grow and succeed. The selection process reviews such factors as the school’s first-year experience, general education program, experiential learning opportunities, strategic planning, and alumni success and satisfaction.

High school counselors and educators nominate colleges and universities for recognition by Colleges of Distinction, which then evaluates each school based on qualitative and quantitative research. The colleges and universities are not ranked but, instead, are members of a consortium of other equally impressive schools. UNH is one of seven schools in Connecticut to be included on the list.

“We focus on colleges that are deeply dedicated to students' learning,” said Tyson Schritter, executive editor of Colleges of Distinction. “Schools designated as ‘Colleges of Distinction’ offer innovative learning experiences that educate, nurture and transform students."

UNH’s curriculum, which is focused on collaborative and discovery-based learning, has helped the University earn a reputation as a national leader in experiential education. Earlier this year, the University’s Cyber Forensics Research and Education Group received worldwide attention for discovering vulnerabilities in popular messaging apps.

As part of a class last semester, students simulated the roles in the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The role-playing exercise was led by faculty who included a former director of counterterrorism at the United Nations, a former U.S. congressman and a Russian affairs expert who served as an election monitor during Ukraine’s national election in May.

This summer, students are volunteering at nonprofit organizations around the greater New Haven and West Haven communities, studying at the University’s campus in Tuscany, and one is interning with the International Governance and Risk Institute in London.

“This prestigious honor,” said President Steve Kaplan, “is a testament to the dedicated members of the University’s senior leadership team, our committed staff and faculty and, especially, our talented and hard-working students and alumni.”

This story was written by Dave Cranshaw, UNH Today Editor.