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Most Notable Higher Ed Institutions in New Mexico

Most Notable Higher Ed Institutions in New Mexico
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Did you know that New Mexico has some tremendous higher ed institutions, and that you can get a great deal on your education if you live in the state? Did you know there are a range of institutions that cater to a wide variety of passions and possible career aspirations?

Case and point, the Institute of American Indian Arts. This one isn’t ranked on our list, but we included it because it is so specific and unique. Here are our picks for “Most Notable” schools in New Mexico. Let’s start our journey…


Institute of American Indian Arts

Institute of American Indian Arts photo
Photo by puroticorico

The IAIA is fifteen minutes outside of Santa Fe and has a student population of about 350. The Domestic tuition is $4,460; a meal plan is about $4924.00, and housing cost is roughly $3,688. The one-acre campus has buildings of Pueblo design.

The IAIA runs the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, the country’s only museum committed to the exhibits, collections, and interpretations of contemporary Native artists. The focus of the school is Native American Art, and many graduates go on to full-time careers as artists while others go on to further their education.

Anyone can apply as long as your focus is the study, preservation, practical application of American Indian and Alaskan Native arts and cultures. The campus is drug and alcohol-free, regardless of your age. So artists, if you are interested in pursuing and preserving Native American art, keep this little jewel in mind.

Annual cost to Attend* – $13,072


5. Northern New Mexico College, Espanola

Northern_New_Mexico_Seal
By Original uploader was NNM12 – nnmc.edu, CC BY-SA 3.0

This four-year college serves rural communities within about a forty mile radius, with a goal to provide affordable community-based learning opportunities that are consistent with the educational, cultural, and economic needs of the population.

NNMC began as a Normal School in 1909 and has transformed over the years into a respectable college with Division II athletics, sixteen clubs and organizations ranging from Cosmetology and Barbering to Phi-Theta-Kappa and everything in the middle. There is no on-campus housing, though a dorm is on the horizon. On campus, students are roughly 69% Hispanic, 12% White/non-Hispanic, 10% American Indian or Alaskan, and 9% other.

If you decide to come here, you can live in the city of Espanola with around ten thousand residents. It is a city that lies between the Jemez and Sangre de Cristo mountain ranges and at the convergence of the Rio Grande, Rio Chama, and the Rio Santa Cruz rivers. Temperatures range from the 90’s in the summer to the low 40’s in the winter. There are numerous outdoor activities to participate in, should you choose to. Northern New Mexico College is on the way up. Join them!

Annual tuition and other fees** – $4,367
Average debt at graduation – $14,332

**There is no on-campus housing available at this time.


4. University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

By John Phelan - Own work, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=18269100
By John PhelanOwn work, CC BY 3.0

UNM occupies eight hundred acres in the heart of Albuquerque, a city of 500,000. The area is surrounded by mesas, banks of the Rio Grande and the Sandia Mountains. Architecture on campus is Pueblo Revival.

UNM is a Hispanic-Serving institution. There are thirty-four thousand students on campus with numerous organizations, sports, and Greek life to choose from. The campus also has multiple museums and galleries as well as an arboretum and duck pond. Who doesn’t love a duck pond?

The university also touts a very accomplished faculty. All of this is offered at an estimated cost of about $21,360 per year for tuition, room and board, books, transportation and miscellaneous costs. Not bad.

Annual cost to attend* – $21,360
Average debt at graduation – $22,880

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