Centre College

Danville, KY

Centre College

Danville, KY

Explore Centre College's Featured Profiles:


Your Future, Front and Centre.

A small private liberal arts college with a national reputation, Centre College promises its students an experience that is intensely personal and deeply engaging. That experience is guaranteed by the Centre Commitment that students will (1) have an internship or research opportunity, (2) study abroad, and (3) graduate in four years—or Centre will provide up to a year of additional study tuition-free.

Founded in 1819—before American spelling was standardized—Centre’s name reflects its location in the center of Kentucky. Centre students come from 45 states and 11 other countries. They are bright (over 50% were in the top 10% of their high school class) and actively involved in their education.

Total engagement
In the most recent National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), Centre exceeded the national average in all of NSSE’s four key measures: academic challenge, experience with faculty, learning with peers, and campus environment.

Centre particularly excels in enriching educational experiences. For example, 93% of students have participated in some form of internship, field experience, or the like, and 94% reported participation in cocurricular activities.  

Rigorous academics, supportive environment
Perhaps Loren Pope said it best when he wrote in his acclaimed college guidebook Colleges That Change Lives, “No university faculty compares with Centre’s in the impact it has on the growth of young minds and personalities. Its faculty is earnestly committed to and excels at the art of teaching.” 

Professors interact with students during class, regularly meet with them during office hours, invite them to dinner, and attend their performances and games. They are an essential part of the campus community, helping mold it into an atmosphere of curiosity and intellect, challenge and support.

All classes are taught by Centre professors; there are no teaching assistants and no large lecture-style courses. During the first two years, students explore a wide variety of courses and subjects. As juniors and seniors, students focus on their major(s) and minor(s). And no matter the major or first career, Centre’s liberal arts focus means students develop the essential critical-thinking and communication skills to stay nimble in the working world. 

National leader in international study
Centre has an exemplary reputation of transforming students into global citizens. Centre ranks #3 for study abroad among baccalaureate institutions, according to the most recent Open Doors survey. By the time they graduate, 85% of Centre students have studied abroad at least once and roughly 25% at least twice.

The College offers signature long-term residential programs directed by Centre professors in England (in London), France (in Strasbourg, across the Rhine River from Germany), and Mexico (in Merida, on the Yucatan Peninsula). Partnering universities provide opportunities to live and learn with locals in China, England, Japan, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Spain.

CentreTerm, a three-week intensive study term in January, is the time to explore new places from new perspectives. Centre Team courses include studying the Celtic origins of bluegrass music in Ireland, agriculture and cuisine in Japan, myth and memory in South Africa, and politics in Myanmar and Thailand.

Students needn’t withdraw from the College or secure international financial aid to study abroad at Centre. All scholarships and financial aid arrangements remain in place, so the cost of semester-long study is the same on campus or across the world. CentreTerm costs run between $2,800–$4,000, with additional aid available for some students. 

Life at Centre
Ninety-eight percent of Centre students live on campus, and that feeling of community is often the highlight of the college experience. Centre offers a variety of housing options, and starting on move-in day first-year students begin building relationships as upper-level students, faculty, staff and even the President help them move into their residence hall.

Centre is also a place where important conversations occur. Our Norton Center for the Arts hosted the nation’s only Vice Presidential Debate in both 2012 and 2000. We have speakers, concerts, plays, and athletic competitions almost every day. We also offer numerous leadership opportunities.

Centre is home to a successful NCAA Division III athletics program that boasts of 38 conference championships in the last 5 years.

A wise investment in your future
With over 90% of students receiving financial assistance, the average need-based financial aid award is 63% of the comprehensive fee. 

Merit scholarships range from $2,500 to the premier full-cost-plus Brown Fellows program for model scholars and Lincoln Scholars program for world changers. Centre also offers scholarships that recognize accomplishments in diversity leadership, foreign language, music, and drama. 

The Grissom Scholarship Program, a “full tuition plus” scholarship and leadership program, recognizes first-generation college students.



Named a top 15 college/university in the South seven years in a row | Forbes


Included in Colleges That Change Lives


Named a Top 50 Liberal Arts College | U.S. News & World Report


“City of Firsts.” Your Second Home.
Danville. This town of about 16,000 was the first capital of Kentucky (among its many firsts) and is full of small town charm, historic architecture, and a thriving main street.

Downtown Danville and Beyond
Nestled in the heart of Kentucky and the state’s central Bluegrass region, Danville has plenty to explore—much of it just blocks from campus. Our safe, friendly city has shops, cafes, parks, galleries, breweries, theaters, and plenty of events and festivals. Historical, cultural, and natural attractions in town are within a short drive. Surrounded by rolling hills, scenic state parks and national forests, the Centre campus is near canoeing, kayaking, biking, hiking, horseback riding, and other outdoor activities.

Centre College Fast Facts

Founded in 1819

1,450 student body

90% of students receiving some kind of aid

18 students in average class size

10:1 student-faculty ratio

98% of students living on campus

85% of students studying abroad

An Inside Look

What students are saying about us...

  • “Balancing academics and athletics has helped me learn important time management skills that are a great preparation for the real world.”

    • Sota Ippongi
      Class of 2024
  • “Centre prides itself on experiential learning, and it has been an important aspect of my growth and development.”

    • Taylor Gebhart
      Biology, Class of 2022
  • “As a first-generation student athlete, Centre has provided me the tools to develop my individuality and use my experiences to uplift those around me."

    • Armon Wells
      Politics, Class of 2022