Most Affordable Colleges in Minnesota 2023

Most Affordable Colleges in Minnesota 2023

Here are the most affordable colleges and universities in Minnesota. Our list will help you find the right kind of school for you, at a price you can afford.

Key Takeaways

  • Minnesota’s quality of life is one of the major reasons why so many college students prefer to study in this state. It is also cited as the third happiest state in the US and one of the healthiest.
  • Minnesota has more than 200 universities. Students won’t have difficulty choosing between enrolling in a four-year college or a two-year vocational school, as the state has endless options.
  • Minnesota is a top spot to attend college, especially if you are interested in an affordable degree in business, education, medicine, or engineering.

Colleges and Universities in Minnesota

One of largest public higher education institutes in the country, the University of Minnesota has main campuses in both of the Twin Cities, Saint Paul and Minneapolis. This school costs about $15,000 in tuition, and provides its students with competitive programs in fields like nursing, education, economics, and psychology. And the options don’t stop there. There are more than 20 schools in the state with religious affiliations, including larger schools like the University of St. Thomas, which campuses in both Twin Cities, and smaller schools like Oak Hills Christian College in Bemidji.

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For students striving to keep costs low in a smaller school environment, Southwest Minnesota State University offers tuition below the national average and serves about 3,500 students. Additionally, those on track to become a teacher or health care provider may be eligible for one of Minnesota’s loan forgiveness programs after graduation. Minnesota also boasts a large network of private colleges, two of which, Walden University and Capella University, primarily cater to online students.

Ever heard the phrase, There’s an app for that? Well, in Minnesota they say something similar, There’s a festival for that. This fun state doesn’t hold back when it comes to celebrating. With events like the Grumpy Old Men Festival, World Festival, and the Perham Turtle Fest, students earning their degrees at one of Minnesota’s more than 70 colleges won’t miss out on a good time.

Discover some of Minnesota’s top programs and learn how you can earn your associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree while cashing in on some of this state’s unique experiences.

What are Minnesota’s Colleges & Universities?

Minnesota’s Best Overall

Minnesota Makes Its Mark With Affordable, Quality Colleges

Quality of Life

Minnesota has a renowned quality of life, making the place very tempting for incoming college students, especially international enrollees. Dubbed the third happiest state in the US, the state is also noted as one of the healthiest.

Minnesota students can enjoy less stress and excellent healthcare. Because of the state’s laid-back and happy quality of life, it’s no wonder why the famous Mayo Clinic, one of the US’ best hospitals, was launched in this state.

Numerous University Options

Minnesota has 200 universities, most belonging to two major educational systems: the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota State and Colleges and University System (MnSCU). MnSCU has 31 colleges on 54 different campuses, offering a range of four-year, community, and technical college options.

The University of Minnesota, on the other hand, has five campuses. UM is recognized as one of the best public universities in the US, specifically for business, education, medicine, and engineering.

For those who are interested in an education degree, the state also has numerous liberal arts colleges, including the well-known Carleton College.

Top-rated accredited online colleges in Minnesota also offer online programs for undergrads and graduate students, who enjoy the same financial aid options in on-campus graduate or undergraduate programs.

Big Cities, Close Communities

Half of Minnesota’s general and student population is based in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. But unlike other progressive cities, Minneapolis and St Paul are known for their friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

Plus, universities like UM have smart initiatives to promote good relationships. For example, the student accommodation is matched with a student based on their goals, interests, and preferences. This is called the ”Learning Living Communities.”

Indoor Walkways and Recreation Spots

Afraid of Minnesota’s long winters? Minneapolis has an amazing solution: enter the Minneapolis Skyway. This skyway is a network of indoor and climate-controlled bridges and paths, allowing the population to navigate the city without stepping outdoors for miles.

The skyway is suspended above streets and connects to Minneapolis’ entertainment and shopping districts. This is perfect, especially for those who are missing the warmer climates of their home.

To break the monotony of college life, go shopping! What better way to do this than shop around in the Mall of America, the state’s biggest indoor mall, packed with more than 400 stores from Victoria’s Secret to Abercrombie, a handful of restaurants, the Sea World Aquarium, and the Nickelodeon theme park.

You read it right—sharks, stingrays, and roller coasters inside a shopping mall. Knowing the cold weather of Minnesota, this makes perfect sense.

Top Companies to Work for After Earning Your Degree

If you plan on working right after completing your college degree, Minnesota is home to many industry-leading companies. Cargill, Target, and the Radisson group of hotels are headquartered in this state.

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There are 13 affordable colleges and universities in Minnesota with stated tuitions and fees under $20,000/year. The following list of the most affordable colleges and universities in Minnesota is composed entirely of schools offering bachelor’s degree programs, have stated tuition and fees near or under the national average of $16,000/year, and are fully accredited colleges.

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Most Affordable Colleges in Minnesota 2022

These schools are ranked by academic excellence, and all under $20,000/year.

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    Student body


    Median SAT/ACT


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    Median SAT/ACT


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    What is University of Minnesota Crookston known for?

    University of Minnesota Crookston’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

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    Student body


    Median SAT/ACT


    What is Southwest Minnesota State University known for?

    Southwest Minnesota State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

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Minnesota’s Most Affordable Colleges in Your Area of Interest

2021 Ranking Archive
  1. Metropolitan State University
  2. Minnesota State University, Mankato
  3. St. Cloud State University
  4. Minnesota State University Moorhead
  5. Southwest Minnesota State University
  6. Bemidji State University
  7. Winona State University
  8. Walden University
  9. University of Minnesota Crookston
  10. University of Minnesota Morris
  11. University of Minnesota Duluth
  12. Capella University
  13. University of Minnesota