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Blanchard officially separated the college from any denominational support and was responsible for its new name, given in honor of trustee and benefactor Warren L.

Wheaton, who founded the town of Wheaton after moving to Illinois from New England.

Mired in financial trouble and unable to sustain the institution, the Wesleyans looked to Blanchard for new leadership.

He took on the role as president in 1860, having suggested several Congregationalist appointees to the board of trustees the previous year.

Kiplinger's rankings measure academic quality and affordability, with quality accounting for two-thirds of the total.

An ecumenical religion journal, First Things, ranked Wheaton the No. The First Things rankings “measured” the academic, social, and religious dimensions of American institutions of higher education.

Wheaton College is home to a Conservatory of Music, fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.

The Conservatory offers two professional music degrees: the Bachelor of Music (with emphases in performance, Suzuki pedagogy, composition, history and literature, conducting, collaborative piano, or elective studies) and the Bachelor of Music Education.Blanchard consistently lobbied for universal co-education and was a strong proponent of reform through strong public education open to all.At this time, Wheaton was the only school in Illinois with a college-level women's program.Also, Wheaton saw its first graduate of color in 1866, when Edward Breathitte Sellers took his degree.Additionally, he is one of the first African-American college graduates in the state of Illinois. Blanchard succeeded his father as president of the college. Oliver Buswell, an outspoken Presbyterian, delivered a series of lectures at Wheaton College.Wheaton College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.