Central Wyoming College
Central Wyoming College, main campus in Riverton, WY
According to Niche, Central Wyoming College is in the top 2.1% nationally, ranking No. 20 out of 922 colleges. Additionally, Niche ranks Central Wyoming College as #1 of all community colleges in Wyoming.
The Niche ranking uses official education statistics of student success, such as graduation rates, and six broad quality measures for Professors, Value, Location, Diversity, Safety and Student Life.
“We are honored to be recognized as a top community college nationally and acknowledge the passion and work of faculty, staff and students at Central Wyoming College” says President Brad Tyndall. “I am grateful to everyone who strives for excellence in education and improves the culture at CWC, and we are ready to continue to build upon these standards.”
At the past month’s Board of Trustees meeting, Dr. Kathy Wells, Vice President of Academic Affairs, presented student success results that corroborated the Niche findings. Wells provided the following data:
• 92.7% of students who completed general education courses in all Central Wyoming College locations via all delivery modes in the fall 2022, spring, and summer 2023 semesters achieved mastery of the learning outcomes
• 94.3% of degree-seeking students achieved mastery of the outcomes for all courses assessed in the 2022-2023 academic year, up from 93.08 the year prior
• Central Wyoming College students performed above the total mean scores in all categories on the ETS® Proficiency Profile Exam in the semester they graduated from CWC
• Central Wyoming College was identified by the NCCBP as a Best Performer (above the 90th percentile) in seven academic achievement categories
• Central Wyoming College graduates performed well on industry certifications and licensing exams with all but one having a 100% pass rate
“In terms of Central Wyoming College professors, deans and our Academic Vice President, Dr. Kathy Wells, have created and expanded many programs,” adds Dr. Tyndall. “I’m proud that they have taken the lead in rolling out Bachelor of Applied Science degrees and options in entrepreneurship, tribal leadership, law enforcement, agriculture, outdoor education, and early childhood teaching. Central Wyoming College now has the highest BAS degree enrollment in Wyoming community colleges. The faculty and staff have launched cosmetology, the Alpine Science Institute, and the Institute of Tribal Learning, along with several new degrees and curricular changes. Our automotive program thrives with the state’s only Metallica scholarship program.”
“Student success is so important to us,” says Dr. Tyndall. “Our Trio and NASNTI programs provide so much support. Our faculty have implemented embedded math tutors that have greatly increased student retention. With the new Rustler Ag & Equine Complex, we now have the largest equine program of the colleges, enhanced by their new ranch horse team. We’ve expanded our agriculture program to include the state’s only ranch-to-table meat processing program with a USDA-certified facility. We’ve started a new meat judging team and a new farmer incubator program at our regenerative farm in Sinks Canyon, which is working hard to expand local food production and sales. So many of our unique student experiences are showcased through our great partnership with Wyoming PBS.”
Central Wyoming College’s solid academics are anchored by arguably the best nursing program in the state. CWC regularly has very high NCLEX pass rates from its program graduates.
Regarding student life, Central Wyoming College has many clubs and the largest variety of sports teams among the community colleges in Wyoming. CWC has a vibrant student life with regular movie nights, other planned activities, and many student clubs.
For several semesters, Central Wyoming College has led the way with record enrollment growth. This last fall, Central Wyoming College grew by 9% over the previous fall.
“I’m so proud of everyone at Central Wyoming College,” adds Dr. Tyndall. “Our team has worked tirelessly to transform so many students’ lives positively. It’s especially amazing given that CWC has about 80% of its students officially classified as “at risk,” the highest in the State. Yet, we have been rated as the best in the state despite that challenge. Our success can be summed up with a culture of caring, innovation, hard work and quality. I’m humbled and blessed to be a part of this institution.”
Central Wyoming College’s mission is to transform lives and strengthen communities through learning, leadership and connection. The college includes a main campus in Riverton, an outreach center, the Alpine Science Institute in Lander, and outreach centers in Jackson and Dubois. CWC is a designated Native American Serving Non-Tribal Institution (NASNTI) and serves the largest American Indian student population in Wyoming.
Niche uses the most up-to-date data from dozens of public sources including the Department of Education, U.S. Census, and FBI. See a complete list of data sources here. The specific methodology for each Niche ranking can be found at the top of the rankings page. For a much more detailed explanation of our calculation process, see College Rankings.
All Photos Courtesy of Central Wyoming College