15 Best States in USA to go to College | All You Need to Know

As a college student, you don’t want to spend the next 2-4 years of your life stuck in a state with little to no excitement or fun. After all, asides from going to college just to earn a degree, there is that part in every student that craves to meet new people and engage in exciting activities. So, choosing a state to attend college can be a bit overwhelming.

While searching for the best higher education in a college in the United States, several factors need to be considered.

When it comes to which state to settle with to attend college, students tend to look critically at the cost of tuition and many other factors. No one wants a college which you will graduate with a huge student loan. 

According to the U.S Department of Education Statistics, the lower the cost of state-sponsored college education, the higher the state will be ranked based on that.

Are you a local or international student seeking college in the States? Then, this article is written just for you! In this article, you will find comprehensive details on what to know about the best states to go to college in the USA.

Read through this article and find all you need to know about the best states to attend college in the USA. They have been ranked based on their tuition cost, living expenses, graduation rate, and many other factors that will make your college years a unique experience.

What to Consider When Choosing a State to go to College

Lots of consideration goes into choosing the state to study in. Studies have shown that beyond academics, students tend to look out for states with the best student life filled with bustling vibes and attractions, and fun-filled colleges with great academic staff and rankings.

Factors to consider when choosing a state to school in are listed below.

1. Cost of attendance

When choosing a state to get a college education, one important factor to consider is the cost of attendance. Most times, some colleges require students coming in from outside the state to pay more than the normal tuition fee. So in choosing a state, you might want to check your purse before making your choice.

2. State amenities

You might want to consider the amenities in a particular state before choosing to attend college there. This is so because they will majorly impact your way of life and experiences. You might want to weigh your different options depending on your specific taste and needs.

3. Employment rates

This is an important factor to consider for students who will need to work while in college. A state which has a low employment rate will have scarce part-time opportunities for students.

4. Exploration privileges

What better way to enjoy college life than going on exploration and having fun when the workload is low or just relieving school stress? So, in choosing a state to go to college, you have to look for somewhere with various options available.

To Know More, Read This: How to Get A College Student Stimulus Check In 2022

Reasons to Choose the Best States to Go To College in the USA

The reasons to choose the best states to go to college in the USA are not far-fetched. For one, you get to enjoy the fame that comes with being in a renowned college. Then, you also enjoy the unique experiences the states offer.

Here are some of the reasons to choose the best states to go to college in the States.

1. Affordability

Some states have offered tuition for in-state and out-of-state students at a low cost without them racking up enormous student loan debt on graduation.

2. Graduation rates

The higher the graduation rates in a state, the more chances students have a successful college experience.

3. Variety of choice

Most states ranked as the best states to go to college in the USA have numerous options for satisfying the interests and goals of students.

How to Afford College in the United States

Seeing as the cost to go to college in the states is a bit on the high side but that is not stopping students from applying, even international ones. So, how do you meet up with the challenge of paying your way through college as a student, even in the least expensive states?

1. Start saving early

This is undoubtedly one of the best ways to fund your college expenses. If you have a 529 college savings plan, you will have the advantage of tax-free savings. The main point of having savings is to spread it out over several years. That can be achieved if you start early enough.

2. Local scholarships

Most colleges offer scholarships to students. Local organizations also offer the same to students to support them. So, it’s best to make inquiries about states that have some of these scholarships or financial aids for college students.

See Also: 17 Scholarships for South African Students to Study In UK 2022

3. Tuition assistance by employers

Depending on the employer, these may be limited, but it certainly goes a long way in helping with college tuition. Apart from just working anywhere, look out for companies that offer tuition assistance to their employees.

Best States in the USA to go to College

To rank the best states in the USA to go to college, the following factors were considered;

  • Graduation rate
  • Tuition cost
  • Living expenses
  • Student-friendly areas
  • Top colleges in the state

Dive in and discover all you need to know about the best states to go to college.

1. Florida

According to the U.S.News Ranking, Florida tops the list of the best states to go to college.

With a graduation rate of 30% and a total cost of an average of $13,603, it ranked high in the list of states students will choose to go to. Florida is home to a minimum of 10 top colleges and a great number of young ones between the ages of 19-25.

What to do during your downtime in Florida? Take a ride to Miami! Experience the fun and diverse side of the state. It’s student-friendly and you sure will find it so.

Check This Out! 15 Best Colleges on the Beach in Florida | 2022 Best Rankings

2. Washington                                                                

Washington ranked second with its reputation as one with high academic excellence. It is home to numerous top universities such as Washington State University.

Not only is Washington a great state filled with top colleges, but it also offers students different job opportunities to cater to their living expenses. If you are going to college to pursue a degree in economics, business, and healthcare, then Washington is the place to be.

Washington colleges have a graduation rate of 36% and average tuition of $7, 168.

Related: 20 Best Colleges In Washington State | 2022 Rankings

3. California

California has close to 15 top colleges making it one of the best states to go to college in the USA. With an average tuition of $8, 192, a little higher than the average of Washington, it still does not deter students from flocking to the state.

It’s really easy to see why it is one of the students’ favorites as the population of young ones between the ages of 19-25 is high-9.15%. Add in the striking beaches and fabulous scenery, and California is just about suitable for anybody.

The state has awesome opportunities for students, especially the sport-oriented ones. You stand the chance of winning a sports scholarship and also joining the best sports college team.

You may like to read this: 10 Best Colleges In California 2022

4. Texas

Another one of the best states to go to college in the USA. Here, you find at least 12 top universities with a large population of brilliant minds to take as friends. If you are inclined toward research, then you might want to check out the University of Texas. Making friends is made easier with the percentage of young ones being 9.6%.

The state has below-average tuition and rent. Even the living expenses in the state and the cost to go to college are within means. It has a graduation rate of 30% and average tuition of $8,598.

Check Out: 10 Best Colleges in Texas

5. Colorado

Colorado is the right choice for students looking to have the best time starting their careers.

The state has a graduation rate of 41%, average tuition of $9,144, and many top colleges such as the University of Denver, and Colorado State University, among many others.

If you are looking for a relaxed atmosphere with a fast-growing economy, or you are leaning towards the tech industry, then, Colorado is a great place to be as a student.

One thing that makes the state one of the best states to go to college is that the tuition costs are below average and upon graduation, the salary scale is high.

Related: 15 Best Esthetician Schools in Colorado | 2022

6. Utah       

For the love of being around minds around the same age, Utah ranks first. It has a population of 10.7% young ones aged 19-25. Living expenses are moderately okay, and studying in the state is very much affordable.

Utah is home to beautiful places to visit and several activities ranging from hiking, exploration, and admiring great arts. Extracurricular activities can involve a visit to the national parks on days when workloads are less.

The state has a graduation rate of 34%, and an average tuition cost of $6,700. It is undeniably one of the best states to go to college as a student.

Read Also: 15 Best Trade Schools In Utah | 2022

7. North Carolina

North Carolina is a great place to study as a college student. The colleges within the state have the best student life compared to other states. There are a whole lot of social activities to get involved in as a student in the state.

Sports like football and basketball are prioritized in colleges, beyond the classrooms, college students will have great fun.

The state has a graduation rate of 31%, and an average tuition cost of $7,228, way below average. Going to North Carolina is undoubtedly a great choice to make.

Read Also: 10 Best Colleges in North Carolina | 2022

8. Georgia

Do you want a quality education but without the burden of an enormous student loan? Then Georgia it is for you. With the high cost of tuition serving as a deterrent to studying in the U.S, Georgia can be said to be relatively affordable.

The state is also suitable for international students who want to experience diverse cultures and prefer not-so-large colleges.

Georgia is home to many top universities like Covenant College, the University of Georgia, and Mercer University.

Georgia has a graduation rate of 31% and an average tuition cost of $7, 457. It is no doubt one of the best states to go to college.

Learn More from this aricle: 10 Best Technical Colleges in Georgia | 2022

9. Massachusetts

Home to several top universities renowned across the world, Massachusetts is among the best states to go to college for higher education. Top colleges in the state include Boston University, Harvard University, and the famous Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Since Massachusetts has graduated many top billionaires, entrepreneurs, and leading figures in the world, it has taken a toll on tuition and living expenses. If you are going to college there, expect to pay more than the average.

As a student in Massachusetts, you will get a high-paying job upon graduation. To make your college days exciting too, there are lots of exciting activities to do.

It has a minimum of 10 top colleges and an average tuition cost of $13,729.

Check This: 10 Best Colleges In Massachusetts 2022

10. Virginia

Ranked as one of the best states to go to college, Virginia is above average when it comes to graduate salaries, level of crime, and happiness. These are part of what makes it a cool destination for school.

The state has an average cost of tuition of $13,655 with 5 top colleges within it. Virginia offers students whatever environment they long for: be it the bustling nightlife comparable to Washington or a serene environment away from the bustles of the city.

Read This: 10 Best Colleges In West Virginia | 2022

11. New York

The grand state of New York boasts of many top-ranking universities ( it has 14 top colleges), and when it comes to extracurricular activities, there’s always something for everyone. It is home to historic sites, theatres, music, and a great fashion scene.

New York has a graduation rate of 37% and an average tuition cost of $8,467. A put-off for college students is the living expenses. Rents are expensive, and bills to pay are high.

Check This: 10 Best Colleges in New York City 2022

12. Minnesota

With a mix of great scenery and opportunities to explore, Minnesota makes a great state to go to college in the USA.

It has one top college, the average tuition of $11,748, and a 9.40% of young ones aged 19-25. You don’t have to worry about living expenses and rents as they are well below average. The state is ranked the third happiest state in the USA, making it a state many students will love to live in.

A perk to schooling in the state is that employment is easy to get. Minnesota has a below-average unemployment rate so students who want to work, both local and international ones, have a high chance of getting employed in one of the top companies there.

Read This: 10 Best Colleges in Minnesota | 2022

13. Wisconsin

Wisconsin has a graduation rate of 30%, and an average tuition cost of $8,764. It is one of the best states to go to college as a student in the USA. It is home to 3 top colleges. And is ranked high in terms of the graduation rates of students.

The top college in Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin, has the best student life. College days simply can’t be boring with the various educational experiences the state offers.

You Should Check Out: University Of Wisconsin Acceptance Rate in 2022

14. Maryland

In Maryland, you can choose to go to any of the 5 top colleges or the others scattered around the state.

Maryland has lots of allures to tempt college students. For one, it is home to the legendary John Hopkins University which is not only famous but one of the most prestigious in the world. If you are inclined towards Computer Science, Biological Science, Criminology, you name it, Maryland got you covered.

Maryland’s proximity to Washington, coupled with its beautiful beaches and cities makes it a top choice for students and one of the best states to go to college in the USA.

See Also: 15 Best Esthetician Schools in Maryland | 2022

15. Indiana

Indiana has a graduation rate of 27%, and an average tuition cost of $9,268.

Going to college in Indiana is worth it because you will spend less on your living expenses as a student. Job opportunities are numerous and as a student, you can easily get a placement in one of their leading companies for part-time jobs.

Boards and rents are affordable in Indiana. The state does not only boast of great colleges, but it also has several heritages and rich history to discover while you are there. It is not surprising it got a spot on our list of best states to go to college in the USA.

Related Post: 10 Best Colleges in Indiana | 2022

Do States In The USA Accept International Students?

When ranking countries that accept a large number of international students, the USA tops the list. So, yes, the states do accept international students to study in their colleges and universities.

Some states are relatively easier to enter as an international student than others. The top states with the most international students include California, New York, Texas, Massachusetts, and Illinois.

How Much Does It Cost To Go To College In The States?

Studying in the United States is a bit expensive. Out-of-state students tend to pay more tuition fees when compared to in-state students.

On average, the cost of tuition in a university is $28,775, and for private, $36,000. Public institutions are cheaper compared to private institutions. International students have it worse because their tuition is higher.    

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best states in the USA to go to college?

The best states to go to college in the United States include Florida, California, Colorado, Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Georgia, among others.

What to consider when choosing a State to go to college in the USA

There are several factors to consider when choosing a state to go to college as a student. They include;
Ranks of colleges and universities
Cost of living
Tuition cost
Graduation rates
Employment rates
Crime rates

What are the most affordable states to go to college?

They include Indiana, Missouri, Alabama, Kansas, Georgia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Arkansas.             

Do states in the USA provide financial aid for students?              

Yes. Some states and also the school, or local organizations provide financial aid to help students pay their way through college.                                                     

How do I decide on the state to go to college?

Do your research well. Make a list of what you hope for in the state you want to school. Then, browse online and make your findings.


There you have them! All you need to know about the best states in the USA to go to college. Since you will be spending the next two to four years of your life in your chosen state, and your choice will play a major role in your lifestyle and probably major life events, a lot of consideration needs to be put into choosing the best state to school.

Hopefully, our list of the best states in the USA to go to college supplies you with some necessary information to guide you while making your choice.


  • Studee.com– Best state to be a student in the USA 2022                                                                              
  • Bold.org- The Best States for College Students in 2022
  • USNews.com– Best States for Higher Education
  • Thescholarshipsystem.com– 11 Things to Consider When Choosing a College in another State


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