New Mexico’s Best Community Colleges of 2021

The best community colleges provide an effective springboard into higher education, offering students high-quality two-year degree programs in a wide range of disciplines. The top-rated community colleges in New Mexico offer a broad selection of associate’s degrees, affordable tuition rates, and strong partnerships with public four-year schools so that students can easily transfer their credits into accredited bachelor’s degree programs.

New Mexico’s Best Community Colleges of 2021

Colleges and Universities in New Mexico

New Mexico has 23 higher learning establishments to choose from, and a tuition range of $1,000–$8,000 in the public sphere makes this state one of the most affordable in the nation. The University of New Mexico, located in Albuquerque, has a student population just over 20,000 and an affordable cost of $8,000. The school is known for its health sciences and business programs.

New Mexico also has four tribal colleges and universities, including the largest tribal college in the country, Navajo Technical University. Students can complete programs in animal science, early childhood multicultural education, and industrial engineering. In addition, New Mexico provides two loan forgiveness programs, one for health professionals and one for public service attorneys. Those working in designated shortage areas can qualify for up to $25,000 per year, and attorneys providing service for government, non-profit, or underserved residents may acquire $7,200 per year.

Pueblos, roadrunners, cacti, and the Rio Grande make New Mexico one of the most unique states in the nation. Though its alleged history of UFO sightings is perhaps its most famous draw, New Mexico has another fascinating monument worth mentioning — Capulin Volcano. The peak of this extinct cider cone volcano, which can be reached by car, offers visitors a view of four other states. Students looking to earn an associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree in The Land of Enchantment are sure to find interesting activities to do alongside their studies.

Prepare to be enchanted by the higher education options and career prospects that New Mexico has to offer.

What are New Mexico’s Colleges & Universities?

New Mexico’s Best Overall


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How do we determine New Mexico's best community colleges?

Methodology

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. This is why, at the undergraduate level, we rank the best colleges and universities based on what we call “Concentrated Influence”. Concentrated Influence takes the combined influence score of a college or university’s top academic influencers (including faculty and alums) and divides it by the school’s total number of undergraduates.

Using concentrated influence gives small and mid-sized schools an opportunity to shine by taking away the size advantage of larger universities. A small school with proportionately more influential faculty than a large school, whose influence in absolute terms may be bigger, will nonetheless score higher in a concentrated influence ranking. Our approach highlights undergraduate schools that truly rank for excellence, regardless of size.

If you are serious about finding the best colleges and universities for a bachelor’s degree, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching and whether their graduates are themselves advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence.

Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Concentrated Influence provides a ranking that is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.


There are 13 community colleges in New Mexico. The following list shows the best community colleges in the state.

Best Community Colleges in New Mexico

  1. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Acceptance

    100%

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Institute of American Indian Arts known for?

    Institute of American Indian Arts’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • History
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    25%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Santa Fe Community College known for?

    Santa Fe Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • History
    • Engineering
    • Law
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Physics
    • Communications
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  3. Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    20%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute known for?

    Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  4. #5

    San Juan College

    Farmington , NM

    Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    23%

    Student body

    4K

    What is San Juan College known for?

    San Juan College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Education
    • Earth Sciences
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Psychology
    • Chemistry
    • Physics
    REQUEST INFO
  5. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    16%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is New Mexico State University Alamogordo known for?

    New Mexico State University Alamogordo’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Business
    REQUEST INFO
  6. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    31%

    Student body

    14K

    What is Central New Mexico Community College known for?

    Central New Mexico Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science
    • Business
    • History
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Physics
    • Earth Sciences
    REQUEST INFO
  7. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is New Mexico State University Grants known for?

    New Mexico State University Grants’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Communications
    REQUEST INFO
  8. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    43%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Clovis Community College known for?

    Clovis Community College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    REQUEST INFO
  9. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    14%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is New Mexico State University Carlsbad known for?

    New Mexico State University Carlsbad’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    REQUEST INFO
  10. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    29%

    Student body

    2K

    What is New Mexico Junior College known for?

    New Mexico Junior College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  11. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    41%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Mesalands Community College known for?

    Mesalands Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Education
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Earth Sciences
    • Political Science
    REQUEST INFO

Resources for College-Bound Students

Photo By: Ken Lund from Reno, Nevada, USA - Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, Santa Fe, New Mexico, CC BY-SA 2.0