New Mexico’s Best Small Colleges of 2021

Small colleges in New Mexico are a great option for students interested in a more intimate campus experience, more personal attention from excellent professors, and more immediate access to support services. Whether the focus is on the technical or on the liberal arts, small colleges give you the chance to pursue a well-rounded education while working closely with classmates and professors in a dynamic community atmosphere.

New Mexico’s Best Small 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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The following list of the best small colleges and universities in New Mexico is composed mainly of four-year undergraduate schools (though a handful also offer graduate programs). We’ve identified 7 small colleges in New Mexico. The list below of the best small colleges in the state satisfies the following four conditions:

  1. It must be a non-profit institution.
  2. It must be fully accredited.
  3. Its student body must consist of 5,000 or fewer students.

How do we determine New Mexico's best small colleges and universities?

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.

Best Small Colleges & Universities in New Mexico

  1. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    29%

    Student body

    2K

    What is New Mexico Highlands University known for?

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

    • Biology
    • Education
    • Literature
    • History
    • Chemistry
    • Political Science
    • Business
    • Psychology
    • Social Work
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    97%

    Graduation

    54%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1275/26

    What is New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology known for?

    New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Physics
    • Engineering
    • Biology
    • Earth Sciences
    • Computer Science
    • Chemistry
    • Education
    • Mathematics
    • Psychology
    • Criminal Justice
    REQUEST INFO
  3. What is St. John's College known for?

    St. John's College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Philosophy
    • Education
    • Law
    • Business
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Anthropology
    • Engineering
    REQUEST INFO
  4. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    51%

    Graduation

    36%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1005/19

    What is Eastern New Mexico University known for?

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

    • Anthropology
    • Literature
    • Education
    • Criminal Justice
    • History
    • Engineering
    • Biology
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Medical
    REQUEST INFO
  5. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Western New Mexico University known for?

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

    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Social Work
    • History
    • Nursing
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  6. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    31%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Northern New Mexico College known for?

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

    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Mathematics
    • Computer Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  7. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $16K

    Acceptance

    45%

    Graduation

    26%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is University of the Southwest known for?

    University of the Southwest’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Religious Studies
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Psychology
    • Medical
    • Literature
    REQUEST INFO

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Photo By: John Phelan - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0