The University of Dayton combines a strong academic and research focus with an emphasis on service, consistent with its Catholic Marianist roots. (It's one of three Marianist universities in the country.)

UD's about 8,000 undergrads and 3,000 graduate students can choose from more than 80 undergraduate and 50 graduate programs, including engineering, education, business administration and law, as well as the nation's first undergraduate human rights studies program, established in 1998. The university's 35 centers and institutes work across all academic disciplines including technology, business leadership and social justice. The school also offers international opportunities, like via its China Institute in Jiangsu Province. Students can study abroad in a wide range of locations for a semester or opt for a trip with faculty during summer or winter breaks.

Dayton promises a tuition plan with no hidden costs: Students receive a personalized overview of their costs and scholarships all four years, so they know exactly how much they’ll have to pay for their entire time at college. The school also vows that enrollees won’t face hidden fees or surcharges, like a student might see elsewhere for things like labs. About 94% of students receive some sort of grant or scholarship to help with costs.

The Dayton Flyers, who compete in Division I level in the Atlantic 10, have had Elite Eight appearances for both men's and women's basketball teams. The college's location in Dayton is a plus as well; the city has an active theater and arts scene, and it is an hour's drive from both Cincinnati and Columbus.