Academic Excellence

Mount Marty University was originally founded in 1936, during the height of the Great Depression. Even then, we recognized the power of academics to change lives and make an impact. 

Today, we continue a tradition of academic excellence, offering majors in high-demand fields and providing top opportunities for hands-on learning experiences. Our core curriculum, the Benedictine Leadership Institute, prepares students to lead and serve while our liberal arts tradition trains students in creativity and flexibility, enabling them to take on any challenge they may face in their future.

It's a difference that has worked for us, resulting in growing enrollment, multiple locations across the state and graduates who go on to serve their communities and make a difference in the world. 

A Reputation for Success

We don't just believe in our academic excellence, others do too. Within recent years, MMU has been regionally and nationally recognized for return on investment, efficiency and effectiveness in education, community service and more. Here are some of our most recent recognitions:


Best Colleges BadgeAccording to a ranking by U.S. News and World Report, Mount Marty University was listed as #84 in the Best Colleges for Regional Midwest category. The list compared 162 ranked colleges and additional unranked schools. MMU also scored #78 in Top Performers for Social Mobility for being more successful than others at advancing social mobility by enrolling and graduating large proportions of disadvantaged students awarded with Pell Grants.

The U.S. News ranking system rests on two pillars. The formula uses quantitive measures that education experts have proposed as reliable indicators of academic quality, and it also uses their research-backed view of what matters in education.

To be designated a "college of distinction" a school's curriculum must emphasize such core competencies as critical thinking, writing, oral skills, research and global perspective. They must also offer dynamic out-of-classroom learning and study abroad programs. 
Colleges of Distinction has awarded Mount Marty University and its major programs with many different badges including the South Dakota College of Distinction, Catholic College of Distinction, 2019-2020 College of Distinction, and the Education, Business and Nursing program of Distinction. Our programs are recognized as first-rate programs and have professional accreditations in these fields. To learn more about our badges visit Colleges of Distinction.



Military FriendlyMount Marty University was recently named to the 2019 Military Friendly Schools List, which honors the top tier of institutions that are doing the most to embrace America's military service members, veterans and spouses as students and to ensure their success on campus. MMU joins this ranking along with 11 other South Dakota colleges and four private (small) colleges.  

Now in its seventh year, the 2019 Military Friendly Schools List was compiled through extensive research and a data-driven survey of more than 10,000 schools nationwide.

Hidden GemMount Marty University was declared a “Hidden Gem” by College Raptor, a college planning website that helps families discover colleges based on personal estimates of actual costs. MMU was one of only 36 midwest colleges to receive this designation.

This selection recognizes MMU as one of the best colleges in the country, based on a combination of factors, including number of applications received, graduation rates, campus diversity, endowment per student and other key metrics as reported via the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) for the most recently available enrollment year.

In a report released in 2017 by The Student Loan Report, Mount Marty University was ranked among the best colleges in South Dakota for students looking to graduate with low levels of student debt.

The report, which was creating using a Peterson’s Financial Aid dataset, details the average student debt per graduate from over 1,100 colleges and universities in the United States.