The Best College Towns In Nevada For 2024

Believe it or not, America has the best colleges in the world. It's been proven by data (and surveys) that the U.S. educational system is of the highest quality

It's actually not even close and Nevada is home to a handful of them.

While we could debate which colleges within Nevada are the 'best,' that's not the goal of this post.

Instead, ride along with us as we determine which college towns in Nevada are the best.

You know, the type of places where there's energy and stimulation, but the type of place you can walk around at night. The happiest, chillest, most downright fun places where you can send your kids off to college where you won't break the bank, or worry about their well being.

The 10 Best College Towns In Nevada For 2024

  1. Las Vegas, NV
  2. Elko, NV
  3. Reno, NV
  4. Henderson, NV

While some of these may not seem like a 'real' college town per se, when you look at the numbers, it's hard to argue against.

And for those who live in Las Vegas, Elko and Reno - we tip our hats to you and we'll schedule a tour for next week. You can see where Las Vegas ranks in terms of the best college town in America.

Even though there are only 4 cities on our list, you need to remember there are another 124 places in Nevada that don't even have a college. One might say you gotta be in it in to win it.

Read on to find out more or for more on Nevada check out:

The 10 Best College Towns In Nevada For 2024

Las Vegas, NV
Source: Flickr User maywong_photos | CC BY 2.0
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 644,835
% Undergrad Pop.: 7.3% (2nd best)
Median Rent: $1,356 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 744.3% (4th best)
Crime Rank: 3rd best
More on Las Vegas: Real Estate | Cost Of Living

Colleges: College of Southern Nevada, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Brightwood College-Las Vegas

Elko, NV
Source: Wikipedia User Famartin | CC BY-SA 3.0
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 20,513
% Undergrad Pop.: 14.5% (best)
Median Rent: $1,142 (best)
Unemployment Rate: 450.2% (best)
Crime Rank: 4th best
More on Elko: Real Estate | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Colleges: Great Basin College

Reno, NV
Source: Wikipedia User | CC BY-SA 4.0
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 265,196
% Undergrad Pop.: 3.8% (3rd best)
Median Rent: $1,360 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 498.0% (2nd best)
Crime Rank: 5th best
More on Reno: Real Estate | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Colleges: University of Nevada-Reno, Truckee Meadows Community College, Milan Institute of Cosmetology-Reno

Henderson, NV
Source: Wikipedia User John Phelan | CC BY-SA 3.0
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 318,063
% Undergrad Pop.: 0.2% (4th best)
Median Rent: $1,641 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 703.9% (3rd best)
Crime Rank: 2nd best
More on Henderson: Real Estate | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Colleges: Everest College-Henderson, ITT Technical Institute-Henderson, The Art Institute of Las Vegas

How'd we figure out the best college towns in Nevada?

To crunch our data on Nevada's best college towns, we used Saturday Night Science to decide which qualities (or rankings) make sense to use in the data, and then crunch the numbers for our rankings.

First off, we firmly decided that only cities with a 4 year college should make the cut -- so there has to be at least one college granting bachelors degrees in town.

You might be surprised to hear that there are only 4 places in Nevada with an institution of higher learning with that criteria.

Source of data include OpenStreetMaps, the College Scorecard, the U.S. Census, and FBI reporting data to include the following factors:

  • Students Make Up Large % of the Population
  • College-specific Factors
    • Graduation rate
    • Tuition Cost
    • Student Body Diversity
  • Town Characteristics
    • Safety
    • Affordability
    • Income and Employment Opportunities
  • Things to Do
    • Bars
    • Museums & Libraries
    • Population Density

We ranked each city across each of the criteria, with one being the best.

We rolled up the individual scores into the category and ranked them again based on the category.

Finally, we took the average rank across each category, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title "Best College Town In Nevada For 2024." We updated this article for 2024. This is our six time ranking the best college towns in Nevada.

And it looks like Las Vegas placed Summa Cum Laude.

There You Have It -- The Best College Towns In The Nevada

If you're looking for the best college towns in Nevada, you came to the right place.

The best college towns in Nevada are Las Vegas, Elko, Reno, and Henderson.

These places all have great college sports programs, tons of stuff to do, and are great places to raise a family.

For more reading, check out:

4 Best College Towns In Nevada

Rank City Population
1 Las Vegas, NV 644835
2 Elko, NV 20513
3 Reno, NV 265196
4 Henderson, NV 318063

Best College Towns By State

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