The state of New Mexico is home to a large number of public colleges and universities, as well as a fair number of private institutions. New Mexico is the 37th largest state in terms of population, resulting in a smaller number of higher education institutions overall. Public institutions make up the majority of educational institutions. The state’s capital is Santa Fe, with the largest city being Albuquerque. New Mexico is bordered by Arizona to the west, Colorado to the north, Oklahoma and Texas to the west, and the country of Mexico to the south.
New Mexico funds several public institutions, the largest of which is the University of New Mexico, which was founded in 1889. The school is located in Albuquerque and is the state’s flagship research institution. The school also operates several branch campuses located in Gallup, Rio Rancho, Taos, Valencia County, and Los Alamos. Since its founding the school has maintained steady growth in enrollment and facilities.
New Mexico State University is the state’s second largest institution. The school is located in Las Cruces, though it operates additional campuses in Carlsbad, Dona Ana County, Grants and Alamogordo. The school also maintains research and extension centers throughout the state. The school was founded in 1888 and has maintained steady growth ever since, though even with its large enrollment of nearly 19,000 students a year, has the relatively low student to teacher ratio of 19 to 1.The school is located near the US-Mexico border.
Other public institutions include:
- Eastern New Mexico University (Portales)
- New Mexico Highlands University (Las Vegas)
- Northern New Mexico College (Espanola)
- Western New Mexico University (Silver City)
- New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (Socorro)
Private institutions are generally more expensive than their public counterparts, offering a more specialized education and typically more educational opportunities outside of the school. Class sizes also tend to be smaller, with a greater focus on personalized learning. Some schools have and may maintain a religious foundation, while others provide a liberal arts education that allows for an education a variety of subjects. Admissions requirements may vary, with some schools having a lax criterion while others are very selective of their students.
Some private institutions in New Mexico:
- St. Johns College (Santa Fe)
- University of the Southwest (Hobbs)
- The Art Center Design College (Albuquerque)
- Carrington College (Albuquerque)
New Mexico is also home to a number of public community colleges and private career schools. Community colleges offer two year and vocational educations for individuals in their service area. Many of these schools offer students a low cost alternative to a four year education by providing the freshman and sophomore years and upon completion, the option to transfer to a four year institution. Other programs prepare students for careers, resulting a in a certificate, diploma, or degree. Similarly, private career colleges offer short term programs in high demand fields, allowing for immediate entry into the workforce upon graduation.
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