Your diploma is framed, your cap and gown are tucked away, and you’ve been to more graduation parties than you can count. Now, where to focus that job search and narrow down where to live after graduation? If your destination bucket list includes lots of culture, a smaller-town vibe and football Saturdays (you’re never too old to tailgate), it might be time to go back to school, just without all the classes and homework.
1. Madison, Wis.
If the Midwest is calling your name, this true college town, home to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is an easy answer. Frequently recognized on awards lists: one of the best cities in the Midwest, the best city for biking, the happiest city in the world, the greenest city, the fittest city, etc., the capital of the ‘state has the feel of a smaller city (population: 272,159) but offers big city services and culture. With a variety of museums, the nation’s largest grower-only farmers market, and many foodie festivals, from the world’s largest Brat Fest to the Isthmus Beer Cheese Festival, it’s also just 77 miles from Milwaukee and 122 miles from Chicago.
Madison is also a great place for people in their 20s (more than half of the population is under 30) and those looking for an active lifestyle (you’ll find five lakes, more than 260 parks and bike lanes everywhere).
Ready to move? The median rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,567, about $400 below the national average, and the median home value in Madison is $339,874. The largest job sectors include healthcare, life sciences, agriculture, advanced manufacturing and IT, and of course public employment in education. Is that “Where, Wisconsin” we hear you humming?
2. Corvallis, Ore.
So your ultimate wish list includes charming homes, proximity to outdoor adventures, and a vibrant college campus i breweries, wineries and independent restaurants? It’s a tall order, but Corvallis, home of Oregon State University, will tick all your boxes.
The beautiful stately campus, located near downtown, is one of the few in the country with National Register of Historic Places status and hosts many cultural events (and Pac-12 athletics) open to the public throughout the year .
With a population of 58,612 and a median home price in Benton County of $527,363, it’s also a place where creative jobs are common: nearly half of the workforce is in careers in science and technology, design and architecture, arts, entertainment and media, healthcare. , law, management and education.
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Weekend warriors will love its location in the Willamette Valley (just 90 minutes from Portland), where both skiing and the Oregon Coast are a short drive away, but events to draw crowds, such as a festival called Da Vinci Days and the Corvallis Fall Festival, make staying in fun, too.
3. Ames, Iowa
“Is this heaven? No, it’s Iowa.”
Longtime Ames residents may tire of the famous “Field of Dreams” line, but the quote from the movie isn’t far off. With Iowa State University, 36 parks, a fun downtown scene, miles and miles of bike trails, four golf courses and more, this college town is a solid place to put down roots.
And we’re not the only ones saying it: Ames, with a population of 66,361 (including students), has amassed a long list of accolades, including Best Place for STEM Graduates, Best City for Millennials, and the Most healthy
If you plan to have children, Ames has one of the best school systems in the country. If you want culture, the university offers Broadway shows, Pulitzer Prize-winning speakers, and famous artists from around the world. If you love college athletics, the Big 12 ISU Cyclones will have you cheering.
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And it’s affordable, too: The median home value is $246,387 and the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $725. The top jobs are in education, government, and professional and scientific and technical services.
The sky? No, it’s Ames.
See also: The best affordable places to live in the US
4. Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Thinking of moving to Wolverine territory? Start by learning the lyrics to the University of Michigan fight song (“Hail! to the brave victors; Hail! to the conquering heroes; Hail! Hail! to Michigan, the champions of the West!”), then prepare to take note of what makes this city (one of the best in the country) so beloved.
The first is the university’s award-winning museums, cultural performances, nationally ranked sports teams (the football stadium seats 107,601, with epic tailgating outside), and an Instagram-worthy campus. Then there’s the food and drink scene: more than 300 restaurants, food trucks, a charming farmer’s market, and a plethora of breweries.
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Or the festivals held most weekends, such as July’s Ann Arbor Art Fair, April’s FoolMoon, and FestiFools and the Holiday Festival of Lights. Or the outdoor options: you can golf, hike, mountain bike, snowshoe or cross-country ski or canoe, paddleboard or kayak on the Huron River.
Named a winner in lists celebrating America’s most educated cities, best coffee, best college towns, happiest cities, best cities for entrepreneurs, best city for millennials, and more, Ann Arbor it has about 122,915 residents (students from the University of M. included). ). The median home value is $377,706, and nearly 10% of the workforce is employed by the university (the city’s largest employer); Unemployment is low, with the health, automotive, IT and biomedical research fields as local leaders.
Ann Arbor? Hello, yes!
5. Fort Collins, Colo.
When it comes to college towns in the Rocky Mountains, Boulder tends to get most of the love. But Fort Collins, home to CU’s in-state rival, Colorado State, is full of potential as a city worth rooting for.
And if you’re a beer drinker, it’s time to raise a pint. Fort Collins makes approximately 70% of the craft beer produced in the state of Colorado and has one of the largest breweries per capita. When friends visit, take a beer tour (there’s plenty to choose from) to sample a Fat Tire from New Belgium, a 90 Shilling from Odell, or a Dunkel from Zwei.
Just an hour’s drive north of Denver, this city (population: 172,676), can focus on CSU (which boasts a world-class performing arts center, historic buildings and a state-of-the-art stadium), but also supports a ballet company, opera company, symphony, art galleries, museums and many live music venues. Major employers in the area include Advanced Energy Industries, Anheuser Busch, Banner Health and CSU.
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And the setting is not bad. Located along the Cache la Poudre River and along the Front Range, camping, hiking, skiing, fishing, biking and other outdoor adventures are just moments away. It’s a perennial award winner on best city lists, from best city to bike to best place to raise a family to best place to live.
The median home price in Fort Collins is rising; currently, it’s $487,730, with one-bedroom apartments renting for $1,500 on average. But it’s easy to see why people come here for college and stay forever.
read the original article on habitability.
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