Freshman Retention Rate

Regional Universities (Midwest)

As many as one in three first-year students doesn't make it back for sophomore year. The reasons run the gamut from family problems and loneliness to academic struggles and a lack of money. If schools you're considering have a low freshman retention rate, you'll want to ask the admissions office why. Some colleges do a great job of taking care of their freshmen; some don't. The retention rates shown below, from highest to lowest, are the average proportion of freshmen entering starting in fall 2008 through fall 2011 who returned to school the following fall.

These rankings are split into 4 regions: North, South, Midwest and West.

School Average freshman retention rate
College of St. Scholastica

Duluth, MN

80%
Elmhurst College

Elmhurst, IL

80%
Hamline University

St. Paul, MN

80%
Lewis University

Romeoville, IL

80%
Maharishi University of Management 1

Fairfield, IA

80%
North Central College

Naperville, IL

80%
University of Detroit Mercy

Detroit, MI

80%
University of Nebraska—​Kearney

Kearney, NE

80%
Webster University

St. Louis, MO

80%
Eastern Illinois University

Charleston, IL

79%
McKendree University

Lebanon, IL

79%
University of St. Francis

Joliet, IL

79%
University of Wisconsin—​Whitewater

Whitewater, WI

79%
William Woods University 1

Fulton, MO

79%
Concordia University Wisconsin

Mequon, WI

78%
Milwaukee School of Engineering

Milwaukee, WI

78%
St. Ambrose University

Davenport, IA

78%
Baker University

Baldwin City, KS

77%
Carroll University

Waukesha, WI

77%
Concordia University

Seward, NE

77%
University of Minnesota—​Duluth

Duluth, MN

77%
Winona State University

Winona, MN

77%
Anderson University

Anderson, IN

76%
Cornerstone University

Grand Rapids, MI

76%
Otterbein University

Westerville, OH

76%

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