To identify the Best Colleges in Nevada for 2017-2018 we averaged the latest results from the most respected college ranking systems with thousands of real student review scores from around the web to produce a unique College Consensus rating for each school. You won’t find a more comprehensive ranking of the top colleges and universities in Nevada anywhere. Read more about our rankings methodology and sources at our about page.
Colleges & Universities in Nevada
Nevada – the Silver State; the Sagebrush State; the Battle-Born State. When they reached statehood in the depths of the Civil War, the people of Nevada were just continuing an already long history of struggle and triumph against a land that did not suffer fools lightly. That spirit informs every aspect of Nevada life, from their ingenuity and innovation to their famously open approach to social life. Nevada’s best colleges and universities have to meet the needs of a highly diverse, highly independent people, from creative artists and writers to brilliant scientists and engineers.
The best colleges in Nevada are designed to meet the specialized needs of a state like no other. The University of Nevada-Reno 56 , for instance, has one of the nation’s strongest engineering programs, especially in civil engineering, earthquake studies, and environmental engineering, precisely because the particular demands of the mining industry, as well as the challenges of sustaining cities in a desert, made those fields crucial to Nevada’s survival. University of Nevada-Las Vegas 57 , in turn, is known for its hospitality and entertainment programs, reflecting the particular environment that shaped its home in Las Vegas. In responding to these localized needs, though, Nevada’s public research universities put themselves on a national level, attracting students from around the US for top-tier education in areas that only Nevada can provide.
At this time, only two Nevada institutions – the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, and the University of Nevada-Reno, have a sufficient number of national rankings or student reviews to earn a Consensus Score. These are the top Consensus colleges for the Silver State.
University of Nevada-Las Vegas
The University of Nevada, Las Vegas is the state’s largest public research university and a major center for culture and learning. Founded in 1957, UNLV was originally a branch campus of the University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada’s first university, but since that time UNLV has surpassed UNR in student body size. UNLV is the home of Nevada’s only law school, only dental school, and one of the most influential hospitality business programs in the world at the Harrah College of Hotel Administration. Other nationally-recognized programs at UNLV include creative writing and music, a heritage of Las Vegas’ entertainment industry.
UNLV is located just a mile from the Las Vegas Strip, in the heart of Nevada’s largest resort and entertainment region (the suburb of Paradise, NV), and that location has attracted students not only for the fun of a college experience in Sin City, but for the opportunity that Las Vegas’ booming economy offers for ambitious young people. UNLV has been named the second most diverse university in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, including a high proportion of Hispanic and Latino students; UNLV’s law school in particular is cited as one of the best in the nation for minority students. UNLV is making a difference in Nevada.
University of Nevada-Reno
Founded in 1874, the University of Nevada, Reno is Nevada’s flagship public research university and the only land-grant institution in the state. With Nevada accepted into statehood during the height of the Civil War, UNR was a key component of social and cultural healing and development. Today, UNR remains one of the most important universities in the west, leading research in crucial areas like civil engineering (especially earthquake research), energy, and environmental science. UNR is also home to Nevada’s only School of Medicine, which plays a critical role in providing medical care and education to Nevada’s spread-out, rural populations, and in the dense population centers of Reno and Las Vegas (home to three-quarters of Nevada’s people).
The University of Nevada, Reno has made diversity and accessibility central to their curriculum, attracting students from all ethnic backgrounds and socioeconomic levels with one of the lowest tuition rates anywhere for a major public research institution. Unusual programs such as one of the few centers for Basque studies, as well as one of the most prestigious journalism schools in the US, bring students from around the nation. Further, UNR’s location near Lake Tahoe and the Black Rock Desert makes it a destination for students interested environmental sustainability and research, as well as nature-lovers and thrill-seekers, making for a uniquely innovative and creative population.