Ames is one of the ‘best college towns’ in America

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In the latest round of rankings from U.S. News and World Reports, the University of Iowa moved up a few spots and Iowa State University moved down.
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Ames has been named as one of the “best college towns” in America by one travel website.

Livability.com and ABODO Apartmentsanalyzed cities across the country with a population between 20,000 and 350,000 and at least one college campus, a recent report said. Their experts then cross-referenced 2016 city population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau and data from the U.S. Department of Education on all college campuses.

Criteria for the rankings, the report said, included:

  • 30 percent: Percentage of the population ages 20 to 29.
  • 30 percent: Ratio of the city’s median salary (from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) to its August 2017 median one-bedroom rent (from ABODO listings.)
  • 20 percent: Number of jobs in the education sector per 1,000 jobs in the city (minimum of 90.)
  • 20 percent: Ratio of the median salary in the city to the nation for education jobs.

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Ames — about 40 minutes from Des Moines and home to Iowa State University — has made Livability.com’s “Top 100 Best Places to Live” for four years straight, most recently at No. 25.

But the city of more than 66,000 placed second as one of the best college towns in America.

Why?

“Ames is is jam-packed with amenities like outdoor recreation, a thriving downtown and a growing economy,” the report said. ” … Students may move to Ames to earn a degree, but they keep coming back, and eventually stay, for the community pride, affordable health care (people and animals), career opportunities, and the long list of things to do.

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The report added that “ISU is renowned for its biology/agriculture program, business school and Cyclones football.”

Recently, ISU fell two spots to No. 53 on U.S. News & World Report’s annual rankings for the best public universities and dropped four spots to No. 115 among all national universities.

You can read the full report here.

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Top 10 Best College Towns

  1. Ithaca, New York
  2. Ames, Iowa
  3. State College, Pennsylvania
  4. Lafayette, Indiana
  5. Champaign, Illinois
  6. College Station, Texas
  7. Lawrence, Kansas
  8. Gainesville, Florida
  9. Ann Arbor, Michigan
  10. Corvallis, Oregon

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