Believe it or not, America has the best colleges in the world. It's been proven by data (and surveys) that the U.S. educational system is of the highest quality
It's actually not even close and Florida is home to a handful of them.
While we could debate which colleges within the are the 'best,' that's not the goal of this post.
Instead, ride along with us as we determine which college towns in Florida are the best.
You know, the type of places where there's energy and stimulation, but the type of place you can walk around at night. The happiest, chillest, most downright fun places where you can send your kids off to college where you won't break the bank, or worry about their well being.
Without further ado, here are the best college towns in Florida for 2020.
While some of these may not seem like a 'real' college town per se, when you look at the numbers, it's hard to argue against.
And for those who live in Clearwater, Fort Myers and Tampa - we tip our hats to you and we'll schedule a tour for next week. You can see where Clearwater ranks in terms of the best college town in America.
Finally, if you live in Leesburg, FL - it's officially the worst college town in Florida. Sorry, Leesburg!
Read on to find out more or for more on Florida check out:
Clearwater is a city located in Pinellas County, Florida, United States, northwest of Tampa and St. Petersburg. To the west of Clearwater lies the Gulf of Mexico and to the southeast lies Tampa Bay. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 107,685. Clearwater is the county seat of Pinellas County and is the smallest of the three principal cities in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metropolitan area, most commonly referred to as the Tampa Bay Area.
Colleges: St Petersburg College, Pinellas Technical College-Clearwater, National Aviation Academy of Tampa Bay
Fort Myers or Ft. Myers, is the county seat and commercial center of Lee County, Florida, United States. It has grown rapidly in recent years. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 62,298 and in 2016 was estimated at 77,146.
Colleges: Florida SouthWestern State College, Florida Gulf Coast University, Southern Technical College
Tampa is a major city in, and the county seat of, Hillsborough County, Florida, United States. It is on the west coast of Florida on Tampa Bay, near the Gulf of Mexico, and is the largest city in the Tampa Bay Area. The city had a population of 335,709 at the 2010 census, and an estimated population of 377,165 in 2016.
Colleges: University of South Florida-Main Campus, Hillsborough Community College, The University of Tampa
Sarasota is a city in Sarasota County on the southwestern coast of the U.S. state of Florida. The area is renowned for its cultural and environmental amenities, beaches, resorts, and the Sarasota School of Architecture. The city is at the southern end of the Tampa Bay Area, north of Fort Myers and Punta Gorda. Its official limits include Sarasota Bay and several barrier islands between the bay and the Gulf of Mexico. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2013 Sarasota had a population of 53,326. In 1986 it became designated as a certified local government. Sarasota is a principal city of the Sarasota metropolitan area, and is the seat of Sarasota County.
Colleges: Suncoast Technical College, Ringling College of Art and Design, Sarasota School of Massage Therapy
Gainesville is the county seat and largest city in Alachua County, Florida, United States, and the principal city of the Gainesville, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population of Gainesville in the 2013 US Census estimates was 127,488, a 2.4% growth from 2010. Gainesville is the largest city in the region of North Central Florida. It is also a component of the Gainesville-Lake City Combined Statistical Area, which had a 2013 population of 337,925.
Colleges: University of Florida, Santa Fe College, City College-Gainesville
Saint Petersburg is a city in Pinellas County, Florida, United States. As of the 2015 census estimate, the population was 257,083, making it the fifth-most populous city in Florida and the largest in the state that is not a county seat.
Colleges: University of South Florida-St Petersburg, Southeastern College-St. Petersburg
Colleges: Pensacola State College, The University of West Florida, George Stone Technical Center
Coral Gables, officially the City of Coral Gables, is a city in Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States, located southwest of Downtown Miami. The United States Census Bureau estimates conducted in 2013 yielded the city had a population of 49,631. Coral Gables is home to the University of Miami.
Colleges: University of Miami, University of Southernmost Florida-Coral Gables Campus
Boca Raton is the southernmost city in Palm Beach County, Florida, United States, first incorporated on August 2, 1924 as "Bocaratone," and then incorporated as "Boca Raton" in 1925. The 2015 population estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau was 93,235. However, approximately 200,000 people with a Boca Raton postal address reside outside its municipal boundaries. Such areas include newer developments like West Boca Raton. As a business center, the city also experiences significant daytime population increases. It is one of the wealthiest communities in South Florida. Boca Raton is 43 miles north of Miami and is a principal city of the Miami metropolitan area, which was home to an estimated 6,012,331 people at the 2015 census.
Colleges: Florida Atlantic University, Lynn University, Everglades University
Winter Park is a suburban city in Orange County, Florida, United States. The population was 27,852 at the 2010 United States Census. It is part of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Colleges: Full Sail University, Rollins College, Orange Technical College-Winter Park Campus
To crunch our data on Florida's best college towns, we had to first decide which qualities (or rankings) make sense to use in the data, and then crunch the numbers for our rankings.
First off, we firmly decided that only cities with a 4 year college should make the cut -- so there has to be at least one college granting bachelors degrees in town.
You might be surprised to hear that there are only 41 places in Florida with an institution of higher learning with that criteria.
We ranked each city across each of the criteria, with one being the best.
We rolled up the individual scores into the category and ranked them again based on the category.
Finally, we took the average rank across each category, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title "Best College Town In Florida For 2020".
And it looks like Clearwater placed Summa Cum Laude.
If you're looking for the best college towns in Florida, you came to the right place.
These places all have great college sports programs, tons of stuff to do, and are great places to raise a family.
If you're curious, these are the worst college towns in Florida, starting with the absolute worst, Leesburg:
For more reading, check out:
|2||Fort Myers, FL||76591|
|6||St. Petersburg, FL||259041|
|8||Coral Gables, FL||50931|
|9||Boca Raton, FL||95745|
|10||Winter Park, FL||30189|
|17||Fort Lauderdale, FL||178783|
|19||Temple Terrace, FL||26062|
|20||Orange Park, FL||8680|
|24||Miami Gardens, FL||112913|
|25||Lake City, FL||11977|
|28||Daytona Beach, FL||66520|
|30||Pompano Beach, FL||108855|
|33||Avon Park, FL||10386|
|34||North Miami, FL||61435|
|37||Lake Wales, FL||15735|
|40||West Palm Beach, FL||108365|