Ames Named Best College Town in America

AMES, Iowa -- Ames has been named the Best College Town in America by financial news website 24/7 Wall St.

The website named the 30 best towns, starting with Ames at number one and ending with Madison, Wisconsin, at number 30.

According to a news release, 24/7’s rankings considered the share of residents enrolled in a graduate or undergraduate institution, the number of colleges and universities in the area, the median age of residents, the city's unemployment rate and the number of bars per 100,000 city residents.

Ames finished first, and number seven was the University of Iowa.

1. Ames, Iowa

  • Pop. enrolled in college: 45.2% (29,369)
  • No. of colleges and universities in the area: 2
  • Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 62.7%
  • Median age: 23.1
  • 2018 unemployment: 1.5%
  • Bars and restaurants: 236 per 100,000 people

 

7. Iowa City, Iowa

  • Pop. enrolled in college: 34.4% (25,276)
  • No. of colleges and universities in the area: 3
  • Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 59.9%
  • Median age: 25.8
  • 2018 unemployment: 1.9%
  • Bars and restaurants: 274 per 100,000 people

 

Students on the Iowa State campus were not surprised by the ranking.

“You look at our campus, it’s like the best campus around. You’ve got all kinds of open space. You look at Ames itself, it's basically centered around college. Everything here is basically for college kids," said Bailee Bortz, an ISU student from Rudd, Iowa.

“Some places are like New York, you think of having a college there, you can’t drive anywhere. It’s a huge city,” said Ryan Smith, an ISU student from Eagle Grove, Iowa. “You think of Ames, we have the bus system. You can transfer anywhere you want. It’s pretty awesome.”

At the Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau, they work to promote the community across the country.

"I’ve been in Ames since ’79, and it is a great place to live, not only to live but to visit," said Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau President and CEO Kevin Bourke. “We’ve got so many things going with restaurants and entertainment in town, and obviously athletics brings a lot of excitement, especially this time of year.”

Below is the list in order of the cities for 2019 Best College Town in America.

30 Best College Towns in America

1. Ames, IA
2. Bloomington, IN
3. College Station, TX
4. Davis, CA
5. Gainesville, FL
6. Ann Arbor, MI
7. Iowa City, IA
8. Provo, Utah
9. Flagstall, AZ
10. Champaign, IL
11. Berkley, CA
12. Greenville, NC
13. Boulder, CO
14. Tallahassee, FL
15. Athens-Clark County, GA
16. Cambridge, MA
17. Columbia, MO
18. Fayetteville, AR
19. Lawrence, KS
20. Kalamazoo, MI
21. Tempe, AZ
22. Muncie, IN
23. Lynchburg, VA
24. Denton, TX
25. Norman, OK
26. Tuscaloosa, AL
27. Chico, CA
28. Fort Collins, CO
29. Bellingham, WA
30. Madison, WI

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