Best Colleges in Kansas

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College-bound students will find 37 accredited colleges and universities in Kansas, many of which are located in the wooded northeastern section of the state near Kansas City, as well as the south-central plains region near Wichita. Students will also find options for two-year programs at technical and community colleges located throughout Kansas, as well as approved private and out-of-state institutions offering approved programs of study in state. Choosing the right college includes considering factors such as program availability, tuition costs, extracurricular activities, and campus lifestyle. We help narrow the decision-making process by providing a list of the best two- and four-year colleges.

Using a custom methodology, our algorithms analyze key performance benchmarks, drawing on federal education bases to pull data on acceptance, enrollment, retention and graduation rates. We also analyze student loan default percentages to provide a more holistic view of value for each institution. We have applied our rigorous methodology to the latest education data to rank the best colleges in Kansas, including the top four-year and two-year schools.

2016 Online Education Trends Report: Learn how online programs are changing the face of higher education.

Prospective students will find a wide range of degrees and programs to choose from at 37 accredited Kansas colleges and universities, 9 of which are public institutions. Though in-state tuition for full-time, 4-year public universities has risen from 2010 to 2015 by an average of 30%, the number of undergraduate students attending full-time increased by 5.1% between 2009 and 2014, and part-time status decreased by 6% in the same time period. During that time, Kansas’ Hispanic and Latino population saw the greatest influx in enrollment, with an increase of 64.9%. Kansas saw an overall increase of 9.2% in bachelor’s degrees earned during that five-year span.

Kansas strategically invests in its universities to promote a highly-skilled workforce and robust economy, particularly in high-demand STEM fields. According to the Kansas Department of Commerce, Kansas recently invested $100 million in its colleges of engineering at Kansas State University, University of Kansas, and Wichita State University. The state legislature also granted $130 million for four major research facilities at Kansas Universities in the areas of food safety and research, biomedical, and aviation engineering.
Source: Kansas Department of Commerce.

Kansas strategically invests in its universities to promote a highly-skilled workforce and robust economy, particularly in high-demand STEM fields. According to the Kansas Department of Commerce, Kansas recently invested $100 million in its colleges of engineering at Kansas State University, University of Kansas, and Wichita State University. The state legislature also granted $130 million for four major research facilities at Kansas Universities in the areas of food safety and research, biomedical, and aviation engineering.
Source: Kansas Department of Commerce.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Graduation Rate Location Description
1

Baker University

 4/557.68%Baldwin City, KS

campus-baker-university

Baker is a private college, home to approximately 3,000 students within four schools: arts and sciences, nursing, education, and professional and graduate studies. With a 12:1 student-faculty ratio, students receive a personalized education with small class sizes. Affiliated with the United Methodist Church, all of Baker’s courses are grounded in the Christian tradition.

Baker’s alumni roster includes a Pulitzer Prize winner, four Rhodes Scholars, and the head coach of the Green Bay Packers, Mike McCarthy.

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2

University of Kansas

 3/560%Lawrence, KS

campus-university-of-kansas

The University of Kansas has 28,000 students across five campuses and 13 schools. The schools of special education and city management and urban policy are widely regarded as two of the finest colleges in their field, and Kansas offers dozens of other programs as well. KU has a number of notable alumni, including 26 Rhodes Scholars, two Nobel laureates, and three Pulitzer Prize winners. The largest college in the state, KU is also known as a premier research institution, and the school offers a variety of well-regarded master’s and doctoral programs.

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3

Kansas State University

 2/558.58%Manhattan, KS

campus-Kansas-State-University

More than 24,000 students attend Kansas State, where they can pursue one of more than 250 undergraduate majors and participate in some of the school’s 475 clubs and student organizations. KSU offers strong programs in a number of fields, including business and engineering. Prospective graduate students can apply to one of KSU’s 65 master’s programs or 45 doctoral offerings. Students enjoy KSU’s campus in Manhattan, where they can experience the vibrancy of a large campus amidst the backdrop of a traditional college town.

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4

Emporia State University

 2/538.74%Emporia, KS

campus-emporia-state-university

Emporia State maintains an 18:1 student-faculty ratio and the average class sizes is 23 students. ESU offers a variety of majors within its schools of liberal arts and sciences, business, library and information management, and teaching. The teacher’s college is known for its exemplary online graduate education programs, and is one of only four post-secondary institutions in the U.S. to be named as an Exemplary Model Teacher Education program in a 2006 national study by Arthur Levine. Additionally, Emporia now has the only master’s in forensics science program in Kansas.

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5

Pittsburg State University

 2/550.1%Pittsburg, KS

campus-pittsburg-state-university

Affectionately known as Pitt State, this public school has more than 7,000 students enrolled across more than 100 academic programs. Pitt State's school of technology is particularly strong, offering several engineering and technical programs that directly prepare students for a career in the field. The school's technology center is the largest academic building in Kansas: it holds more than 13 computer labs and almost 70 technical labs. Pitt State also offers seven bachelor's programs in business, including degrees in accounting, economics, finance, marketing, and computer information systems.

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6

University of Saint Mary

 4/534.51%Leavenworth, KS

Saint Mary is a private liberal arts school, and one of just four Catholic colleges in Kansas. USM offers more than 30 undergraduate programs, eight graduate degrees, and a doctoral program in physical therapy. There are just over 1,500 enrollees, and a low student-faculty ratio ensures small classes and individual attention for all. More than 60% of students are women, and 98% of students receive some form of financial aid.

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7

Bethel College-North Newton

 4/557.63%North Newton, KS

Bethel is a private Mennonite college with an enrollment of approximately 500 students. In addition to a liberal arts and science focus, Bethel's common ground program requires students to take classes on faith, peace, justice, and other cultures. An all-school assembly meets twice weekly to expose students to guest lecturers, performances, and student presentations. Bethel is also an affordable school, and most students receive some form of financial aid. Additionally, any student who enters Bethel as a freshman, maintains the same major, takes a full class load each term, and make reasonable academic progress will receive free tuition for any classes they need to take in order to graduate after their first four years.

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8

Newman University

 4/547.83%Wichita, KS

Newman is a small Catholic college in Wichita with an enrollment of just over 2,700 undergraduates. Newman boasts a 15:1 faculty-to-student ratio, ensuring that students can build meaningful relationships with professors and peers amidst engaging class discussions. Every student is required to complete the core curriculum known as the Newman studies program, which requires students to take classes in a variety of different fields to ensure they receive a well-rounded education.

The school offers dozens of academic degrees, but the nursing program deserves special mention. Students can pursue a traditional bachelor's in the field, or an RN to BSN or LPN to BSN. Graduate students at Newman can earn a master's degree in education, nurse anesthesia, theology, business administration, or social work.

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9

Wichita State University

 2/544.45%Wichita, KS

One of the largest schools in Kansas, Wichita State is a public research institution with approximately 15,000 students. The school features more than 60 undergraduate degree programs, 44 master's degrees, and more than a dozen doctoral offerings across six colleges. Unique WSU student traditions like Hippodrome and Shocktoberfest also promote an exciting student life and a tight-knit campus community.

WSU maintains a close relationship with its home town. Wichita is the largest city in Kansas, and the school's proximity to a buzzing commercial hub gives students more educational and career opportunities than they'll find at many other schools throughout the state.

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10

Southwestern College – Kansas

 4/553.8%Winfield, KS

Southwestern College is a private school located in Winfield, Kansas, only 40 miles outside of Wichita. Southwestern provides all freshman with new laptops and the school maintains a 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio. SC offers more than 40 majors and six graduate programs.The professional studies programs caters to military personnel and working professionals, and offers more than 25 undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Students enjoy unique campus traditions, such as the annual building of The Mound. The campus also has one-of-a-kind features such as the 77 Steps, the Heritage Rock sculpture, and the Builders Around the World avenue of flags.

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11

Fort Hays State University

 1/543.01%Hays, KS

Fort Hays State has an enrollment of more than 14,000 students, but with fewer than 5,000 students living on campus, the school maintains a small, cozy feel. With 28 academic departments across four colleges, Fort Hays offers a variety of associate, bachelor's, and master's programs.

Fort Hays has more online enrollees than on-campus students. The virtual college offers more than 40 fully accredited degrees, providing working adults, military service members, and non-traditional students with a flexible path toward a degree. Fort Hays has also been named a top military-friendly college for veterans and active personnel.

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12

Ottawa University – Ottawa

 4/531.34%Ottawa, KS

Ottawa provides students with a robust liberal arts education. This private college is affiliated with the Baptist Church and offers students a faith-based education and a community of like-minded enrollees with similar values. Ottawa features more than 25 disciplines across its schools of arts and sciences, business, education, and health and applied sciences. The university also awards master's degrees in four subjects.

OU features a variety of online classes and extended campuses in Kansas, Arizona, Indiana, and Wisconsin. Ottawa is also a military friendly school, offering a military tuition rate for active service members and their spouses, trained military enrollment and financial advisors, and flexible deployment policies.

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13

Friends University

 4/534.32%Wichita, KS

Friends University ranks high in student satisfaction due to its affordability, the quality of student life, and the presence of more than 50 majors. Friends is a private, non-denominational Christian college in Wichita. With about 2,000 students, Friends features a tight community and small class sizes.

In addition to the education and community, the university's innovative adult and online program offers military service members and working professionals the opportunity to pursue a college education on a flexible schedule. Online courses are taught asynchronously, allowing students to take classes at their convenience. Additionally, through the school's friendship fields program, the university enables college-age adults with disabilities to attend school, simultaneously affording special education students the opportunity to work with people with special needs.

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14

Kansas Wesleyan University

 4/532.61%Salina, KS

At Kansas Wesleyan, students receive dedicated attention from professors amidst small class sizes and an academic environment dedicated to student success. With just 700 students, KWU provides enrollees with a safe, friendly, and faith-based community. The university offers a variety of undergraduate and pre-professional degrees across its 18 departments.

The school's unique open option program allows undecided students to explore various programs before declaring a major by their junior year. An advisor helps them focus on their skills and interests to determine which courses to take and ultimately which major suits them best.

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15

Washburn University

 2/534.02%Topeka, KS

Washburn offers its nearly 7,000 students more than 200 academic paths, including a variety of bachelor's and master's programs. Programs are offered through Washburn's colleges of arts and sciences, applied sciences, nursing, business, and law. The student-faculty ratio is about 15:1, which ensures small class sizes, particularly for students in the final stages of their degree. Students from Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas can attend Washburn and pay in-state tuition.

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The Kansas Department of Commerce reports that about 90% of Kansas adults have a high school diploma, ranking the state number 17 in the country. Over 30% of Kansas adults 25 and older have a college degree. Despite high education rates, over 700,000 Kansas adults between the ages of 25 and 65 lack postsecondary credentials. Kansas has a long-term strategic plan to better prepare its workforce, with aims to achieve a 60% increase in the number of earned certificate, associate or bachelor’s degree by 2020.

Since implementing the plan, Kansas has seen an increase of 5.6% in associate degrees earned between 2009 and 2014. Kansas offers associate’s degrees and certification programs at 43 two-year and training institutions throughout the state. In addition to more traditional two-year programs, Kansas has worked to find innovative ways to close this gap through its Accelerating Opportunity (AO-K) initiative. AO-K is a unique delivery system for adult education that allows students to earn short-term certifications through a career pathways framework.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Graduation Rate Location Description
1

Salina Area Technical College

 1/565.12%Salina, KS

campus-salina-area-technical-college

Students interested in a two-year career training program in areas of business, healthcare, technology, and construction or trades can attend Salina Tech for a comprehensive educational experience. The school offers a variety of programs for skilled trades workers, as well as general education programs and continuing education credits.The college was ranked the #1 College in Kansas for student success by the Kansas Board of Regents Student Success, and is among the top 10% in the nation according to the Aspen Institute. The college accepts transfer students and also offers Veteran Affairs (VA) benefits.

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2

Northwest Kansas Technical College

 1/560.74%Goodland, KS

campus-northwest-kansas-technical-college

One of the fastest growing colleges in Kansas, Northwest Tech has an innovative college campus equipped with the latest technologies to adequately train students interested in a career in the skilled trades, technology, and business industries. The school also offers certification courses for medical professionals and truck drivers, and distance-learning options for those who need some flexibility with scheduling. In addition, students living near the campus have easy access to the hiking trails, entertainment venues, and weekend activities in Goodland, Kansas.

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3

Coffeyville Community College

 1/536.42%Coffeyville, KS

campus-coffeyville-community-college

This two-year college offers 24 academic programs, 15 technical programs and 14 certificate programs available at three campuses. Coffeyville Community College is home to a student population of approximately 3,000 students every year, and more than half to these students live in Montgomery County. The main campus is located in downtown Coffeyville, providing students with easy access to area businesses for work-study programs and leisure activities. The Presidential Scholarship is available for academically gifted students, and community members over the age of 55 can apply for the Gold Card Scholarship to enroll in courses free of charge.

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4

Flint Hills Technical College

 2/554.62%Emporia, KS

campus-flint-hills-technical-college

Flint Hills Technical College offers 20 programs of study to prepare students for rewarding careers in the technical industry. The campus is located in the heart of the Flint Hills rangeland near the Tailgrass Prairie National Preserve. Founded in 1963, the college is committed to supporting personal and economic growth through innovation in education while maintaining a high standard of excellence. Students can enroll in a program of study for an Associate of Applied Science degree, technical certificate, or other credential. Students are encouraged to schedule a campus tour any time of year to learn about the campus and culture.

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5

Colby Community College

 1/535%Colby, KS

campus-colby-community-college

Located almost 50 miles from the Colorado and Nebraska borders, Colby Community College primarily serves students interested in agriculture-related programs. The school operates its own 60-acre agricultural center on other side of the city to provide students with essential hands-on training and learning opportunities. Students can choose from more than 60 academic and vocational programs to prepare for some of today's high-demand industries. Athletics and academics are part of the student experience at Colby and the school is a member of the Jayhawks Conference. The school also has a fitness center and indoor swimming pool.

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6

North Central Kansas Technical College

 1/5N/AKS

Students can attend one of two campuses at North Central Kansas Tech, an accredited school that offers 24 programs of study. Students of the Beloit Campus have access to a Student Union, and this campus offers food and housing services. Educational programs prepare students to enter the workforce in as little as 9 or 18 months, depending on their area of study. Many students gain valuable hands-on training through internships, which are available with most programs of study.

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7

Fort Scott Community College

 1/530.84%Fort Scott, KS

Fort Scott Community College is the oldest continuous community college in the state of Kansas. It offers affordable educational and occupational programs for students looking to start a rewarding career in their chosen field, as well as adult education courses for those who want to earn their Kansas Work Ready certificate or improve their employability. Student activities are an important component of this college, and the school is home to several organizations, including the Collegiate Farm Bureau, Phi Theta Kappa and a Livestock Judging group. The Greyhound athletics team includes men's and women's rodeo teams.

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8

Wichita Area Technical College

 2/537.86%Wichita, KS

Students interested in aviation, healthcare, manufacturing, business, law enforcement, and design programs will find a wealth of options at Kansas colleges like the Wichita Area Technical College. The school offers general studies and specialized programs. Aviation students attend the National Center for Aviation Training, while other students attend the Southside Center or Grove campus in Wichita. Students have the option to complete an Associate of Applied Science (AAS), a Technical Certificate (TC) program, or a Certificate of Completion (COC).

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9

Pratt Community College

 1/538.68%Pratt, KS

This two-year community college and vocational school has been serving students for more than 75 years. Many students attend Pratt to prepare for a four-year college or university program while others look to learn skills needed to immediately enter the workforce. The school's leading programs include Electrical Power Lineman Technology, Ag Power Technology, Automotive Technology and Nursing. Students attending this school save an average of $5,500 over two years at Pratt Community College instead of completing a program at a comparable four-year university. The school also offers a generous scholarship package to qualifying students.

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10

Manhattan Area Technical College

 1/556.92%Manhattan, KS

Students interested in working in the nursing, biotech, construction, business, or transportation industries will find a wealth of specialized programs at Manhattan Area Technical College. This school provides comprehensive hands-on training for several technical careers and prepares students for advanced degrees in their chosen field. It offers Associate of Applied Science degrees as well as technical certificates and affordable tuition fees. The school reports more than 70% of MATC students continue with higher education or complete their program of study. Most programs can be completed in one to two years if enrolled full time.

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11

Seward County Community College and Area Technical School

 1/535.86%Liberal, KS

Established in 1967, Seward County Community College Area Technical School is an accredited community college offering associate degrees and certificate programs for students of all ages. The school had an enrollment of more than 2,600 students in the 2014-15 school year and offers a range of campus amenities for students who want to make the most of their educational experience. The main campus provides computer labs, a 2,500-seat gymnasium, a student union, cafeteria, and residence halls. Students can enroll in several career programs in areas of allied health, agriculture, business, and industrial technology.

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12

Hesston College

 4/554.87%Hesston, KS

One of the few Christ-centered colleges in Kansas, Hesston College is a two-year liberal arts college that provides students with real-world experience with comprehensive training and educational programs. Almost half of the students are from Kansas. The school is only one of two in the state to offer FAA-approved flight training programs and the only college to offer both a two-year ADN degree and a four-year BSN degree. It also offers a faith-based disaster management program. Service learning opportunities are readily available across the campus and in the local community. The school encourages students to participate in student-led Campus Worships every year to make the most of their experience.

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13

Highland Community College

 1/527.47%Highland, KS

Highland Community College opened its doors in 1858, making it the very first college in Kansas. The school offers a wide range of educational opportunities for those who want to pursue a bachelor's degree but also offers technical programs for those who want to enter the workforce within two years. Students can complete an associate degree in art, science, applied science, or general studies, or select one of several specialized certificate programs for practical skills training. More than 70% of students surveyed by the school stated that they intend on enrolling in a bachelor's degree program, while the remainder intend to pursue vocational careers or are interested in workforce development.

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14

Dodge City Community College

 1/552.45%Dodge City, KS

Students have completed technical or career training programs at Dodge City Community College since 1935. Students with families can take advantage of affordable childcare at the school's Child Development Center and participate in community programs. The school provides affordable student housing options and a robust athletics program to encourage students to participate in events with their peers. eLearning and distance education options are available for those who need some flexibility in their schedule or cannot drive to campus every day.

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15

Garden City Community College

 1/537.23%Garden City, KS

Garden City Community College is one of the first of four community colleges established in Kansas in 1919. The Kansas Legislature identified the school as an independent college in 1965 and the 63-acre campus now serves thousands of students a year with a wide range of degree and certification programs. The school caters to international students and transfer students, as well as non-degree seeking students looking to learn new skills. Some courses are available online through the eCollege platform. The Garden City Busters are the school's athletic team and many of their games are a community tradition.

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16

Barton County Community College

 1/527.96%Great Bend, KS

Offering both online and classroom-based courses, Barton Community College has a wide range of educational offerings for full-time and part-time students. Students can choose from several general education and career or technical training programs. The school offers on-campus housing options for those who want a more traditional college experience as well as hybrid and online courses for students who need some flexibility in their schedule. Barton is the leader in training military members, with service locations at Fort Riley and Fort Leavenworth. Enrollment in the 2014-2015 school year was approximately 17,000 students, making it one of the larger two-year colleges in Kansas.

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17

Cloud County Community College

 1/530.68%Concordia, KS

Located in north central Kansas, Cloud Community College is one of 26 public, two-year community and technical colleges in these state. Students can choose from one of four associate degree programs, 16 career programs, and 90 online course offerings. Unique learning experiences include the Cloud Power Wind Farm, which serves as the on-site laboratory for students enrolled in the Cloud's Wind Energy Technology program. Currently, the school has two Northwind 100 wind turbines that produce 350 kilowatts of electricity. Across all programs, smaller class sizes provide a more personalized experience and students also have a wealth of resources available to them for career guidance and support.

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18

Allen County Community College

 1/537.06%Iola, KS

Students enrolled at Allen Community College have the flexibility to complete their education online or at one of two college campuses in Kansas. The school offers associate degree programs and 14 career and technical education certificate programs. Students seeking professional licensure can complete one of 12 programs at this school to prepare. All students are encouraged to participate in student activities such as band, choir, drama club, art club, and the Collegiate Farm Bureau. The school is home of the Red Devils athletics team, which participates in the Jayhawk Conference each season.

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19

Independence Community College

 1/527.4%Independence, KS

Established in 1925 as part of the Independence public school system, Independence Community College is now a thriving community college with innovative educational and training programs. Recent renovations include the completion of the veterinary classroom and labs for the Veterinary Program, one of the school's newest programs. The school provides 46 programs of study for associate degree-seeking students and 22 certification programs. Many programs are designed to help students transition into a four-year college upon completion. All students are encouraged to participate in athletics and student activities, including music clubs, student government, arts, and theater.

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20

Hutchinson Community College

 1/527.16%Hutchinson, KS

Hutchinson Community College is one of the premier two-year educational institutions in Kansas and has been serving students and the community for more than 80 years. This campus has undergone many renovations over the past decade, including the renovation of Gowan's Stadium and the old Science Hall, which is now a modern science facility called the Richard E. Smith Science Center. The school offers more than 1,300 courses and 120 majors across all major industries. The school encourages students to make the most of their college experience by participating in campus activities and athletic events. It is a member of the Jayhawk Athletic Conference and consistently ranks among the top athletic teams in the country.

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21

Cowley County Community College

 1/532.76%Arkansas City, KS

Founded in 1922, Cowley College caters to students interested in career training programs and transfer courses for more than 80 programs of study. The college offers affordable education for area residents. Students can complete an associate degree, certificate program, or transfer to a university for an advanced degree with the comprehensive educational programs at this school. Pre-professional medical, engineering, performing arts, and sports and recreation programs are a few of the program offerings at this school. Some online courses and hybrid classes are available for students that cannot commute to the campus.

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22

Haskell Indian Nations University

 1/522.94%Lawrence, KS

Haskell Indian Nations University caters to approximately 1,000 students from federally recognized tribes every semester, making it one of the best colleges in Kansas for Native American students. Students can complete associate or bachelor's degree programs at this historic campus in the Kaw Valley. Students can live on campus in one of six residential halls designed to provide a positive and meaningful college experience. The school has three professional schools, a College of Humanities and Arts, and a College of Natural and Social Sciences. The General Education program is designed with an emphasis on American Indian and Alaska Native history, culture, and art.

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23

Kansas City Kansas Community College

 1/522.26%Kansas City, KS

Students interested in training for a technical career, transferring to a four-year college or university, or expanding their professional skill set can attend Kansas City Kansas Community College for comprehensive training and education programs. This school was founded in 1923 and now boasts modern classrooms, new equipment and technologies, and attractive housing options. More than 6,000 students were enrolled at this college in spring 2015, and the majority of students are from Wyandotte County. The Endowment Association awards scholarships of at least $250 each year to students based on academic qualifications and need.

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24

Butler Community College

 1/523.35%El Dorado, KS

Butler is the second largest community college in Kansas. It is also the sixth largest educational institution in the state of Kansas, catering to more than 13,000 students each school year. The school offers more than 90 comprehensive academic programs within six academic divisions, including early college academics that allow exceptional high school students to combine their last two years of high school and the first two years of college. This is also one of the best colleges in Kansas for athletics, and is a member of the Jayhawk Conference and the NJCAA Region VI.

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25

Johnson County Community College

 1/515%Overland Park, KS

Catering to more than 46,000 students every year, Johnson County Community College is one of the largest colleges in Kansas and offers a variety of undergraduate courses and certificate programs. Programming and teaching programs are the most popular educational tracks at this school and many residents of the Kansas City area enroll in courses for noncredit workforce development. Students have the option of taking courses in a traditional classroom setting or hybrid courses (a combination of online and classroom training), and complete on-the-job training through internships. Self-paced and study abroad programs are also available for qualified students.

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If you’re thinking about applying to one of the best colleges in Kansas, continuing reading to learn more about living in the Sunflower State.

Kansas is known as the Sunflower State, and is known for its wide central prairies and limestone bluffs in the central Flint Hills region. Nature enthusiasts will find a diverse set of land features across the centrally-located state, from wooded hills in the northeast to canyons and mesas down south.

Kansas ranks in the top one-third of states for clean air and is ranked 10th in percentage of sunshine. A blend of urban and rural communities, Kansas has a thriving economic industry base, particularly in the areas of bioscience and agriculture; logistics and distribution; energy technology; and advanced manufacturing in the aerospace and automotive industries.

Residents of Kansas will find a strong athletic presence in its communities. In addition to being known as the Soccer Capital of America (Kansas City), the state is home to two of the top golf courses in the nation according to Golf Digest. The Kansas Speedway also hosts NASCAR races each year. Kansas also harbors a rich collection of historical attractions, including the Brown vs. Board site and the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum. Foodies can explore a slew of local fare and BBQ restaurants throughout Kansas, which is also known as the Breadbasket of America.

Ease of travel is a highlight of living in Kansas, which was recognized in 2013 for some of the best road systems in the nation by the Reason Foundation. The average commute in Kansas is 18 minutes, the fourth shortest nationwide. The cost of living in Kansas is about 8.74% of the national average, ranking the state the 6th most cost-friendly state in the nation.

Source: Kansas Department of Commerce

Regional Spotlight: South-Central (Wichita Area)

  • Major Cities: Wichita, Hutchinson
  • Attractions: Sedgwick County Zoo, Chisholm Trail, Cherokee Strip Museum
  • Cost of Living: Wichita
  • Popular Schools: Wichita State University

Regional Spotlight: South-East/Central (Flint Hills)

  • Major Cities: Emporia, Pittsburg
  • Attractions: Fort Scott
  • Cost of Living: Pittsburg
  • Popular Schools: Emporia State University, Pittsburg State University

Regional Spotlight: Northeast (Eastern Wooded Hills)

  • Major Cities: Kansas City, Manhattan, Lawrence, Topeka, and Overland Park
  • Attractions: Kansas Speedway, Sporting Kansas City, Fort Leavenworth, Aggieville
  • Cost of Living: Kansas City
  • Popular Schools: Baker University, Benedictine College, University of Kansas, Ottawa University, Washburn University

Residency

Minors and Adults

Independent candidates for Kansas Residency (or parents of any minor) must have lived in Kansas for more than one year prior to being enrolled at a state university. Candidates must intend to stay in Kansas as a permanent resident. The Registrar will consider change in residency status for a candidate who has been a resident for 12 months. Independents or parents of minors must submit evidence to help determine their status, which can include (but is not limited to) the following information:

  • Payment of state income taxes
  • Acceptance of an offer of permanent employment in Kansas
  • Ownership of a home in Kansas
  • Candidates who have been married to a Kansas resident for more than 12 months

Source: Kansas Board of Regents

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