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Wartburg College

Wartburg College

Wartburg College


College is about more than just a degree. It is an investment in your future. The liberal arts education you will receive at Wartburg allows you to not only gain the skills required from your chosen field of study, but also the critical thinking skills required to explore the ethics of decision-making and community engagement, effective communication, cultural competence, and collaboration.

Our Mission

Wartburg College is dedicated to challenging and nurturing students for lives of leadership and service as a spirited expression of their faith and learning.

Our Identity

Wartburg College is a liberal arts college of the Lutheran Church (ELCA). You don’t have to be Lutheran, or even Christian, to appreciate the way a Wartburg education will help you discover meaning and purpose in your life. Many colleges work from a common creed or statement of belief where faith is imposed. Other colleges keep faith out of community life entirely. At Wartburg College, we use the Lutheran approach to education, which builds a community around a lively and inclusive conversation of faith and learning. Martin Luther, who sparked the Reformation in 1517, was both a pastor and a university professor. He wrestled with the bigger questions of life and how faith could truly change the world around us. Because of our Lutheran theological perspective, we want you to also wrestle with these big questions as you work through your four years at Wartburg. We invite and encourage conversations with people of diverse backgrounds and with differing spiritual perspectives. In turn, you will learn more about your own beliefs and values.

Discover Your Calling

Wartburg College helps students discover and claim their callings—connecting their learning with faith and values, their understanding of themselves and their gifts, their perspective on life and the future, and the opportunities for participating in church, community, and the larger society in purposeful and meaningful ways.

Most Popular Majors

  • 1 Business Administration
  • 2 Biology
  • 3 Elementary Education
  • 4 Journalism and Communication
  • 5 Music Education

International Recognition

  • One of five colleges to receive the Washington Center’s inaugural Higher Education Civic Engagement Award for service-learning and community engagement.
  • Nationally classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as one of 12 exclusively baccalaureate colleges that foster experiential learning and community engagement.
  • Named eight consecutive times to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, three times “with distinction,” in recognition of volunteer efforts by Wartburg students.
  • One of only six Iowa colleges included in the 2014-15 Colleges of Distinction, which recognizes schools that have demonstrated their dedication to "engaged students, great teaching, vibrant communities, and successful outcomes."
  • Wartburg was ranked 16th in the nation for short-term study abroad in the 2014 Open Doors Report, conducted in partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
  • Included in Washington Monthly's best liberal arts colleges ranking for its contribution to the public good through social mobility, research, and service.
  • Winner of NetImpact’s 2012 “Small Steps, Big Wins Challenge,” a national competition among universities and colleges rewarding social and environmental actions.
  • Ranked in the Princeton Review as one of the best colleges in the Midwest region.
  • Listed in Peterson’s Top Colleges for Science among 200 schools with outstanding programs in science and mathematics.
  • One of two colleges in Iowa to be nationally recognized by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education for its elementary education program.
  • Included among the first-tier Best National Liberal Arts Colleges as ranked by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked No. 7 among national universities and liberal arts colleges by U.S. News and World Report as an “overperformer” in graduation rates for students from low-income families.
  • Included in Money Magazine's "best colleges" ranking.
  • The Wartburg “Community Builders” program was awarded a MacJannet Prize for Global Citizenship.

Graduate in four years!

What is a Graduation Rate? This can be a very confusing concept. Basically, this is the percentage of students who actually complete a degree at the institution. Most reports online will show a 6-year graduation rate, which is the percentage of full-time students received their bachelor’s degree within six years, which has become the average length of an undergraduate education at many universities. This is NOT true at Wartburg College. 93% of our graduates finished their degrees in four years. Of the full-time students who started at Wartburg, 63% will complete their degree at Wartburg, which is considered a very high graduation rate. In the past 10 years, Wartburg has had graduation rates as high as 70%. Why compare five years at state schools to four years at Wartburg? The reality for many students is it will take four-and-a-half to five years or more to earn a degree at a state school, according to national statistics. At Wartburg, 93 percent of our graduates complete their degree in four years.


Academic Fast Facts

  • Average class size: 17
  • Student-faculty ratio: 11:1
  • Full-time faculty: 104
  • Ranked faculty with the highest degree in discipline: 99%
  • Endowed faculty positions: 2 distinguished chairs, 11 endowed chairs, 1 distinguished professorships, 4 endowed professorships.


    • Waverly

      100 Wartburg Blvd. , 50677, Waverly