Major universities: Florida State University, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, Tallahassee Community College
6. Tallahassee, FL
Florida’s capital city is home to the state's largest and flagship university, Florida State University (FSU). The university’s sprawling, 1,300-acre site, is located within the urban center of Tallahassee, which sits near its northern border at the crook of the panhandle. Along with the usual contributions that universities make to its surrounding areas, FSU also operates one of the country’s largest university museum complexes in the nation, including the John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art, and the State Art Museum of Florida.
Job opportunities for area graduates are wide ranging, with government and law serving as some of the biggest employers; nearly 30 state government agency headquarters are within the city limits. The area is also boosted by a huge scientific community, which is directly related to FSU’s position as a sea and space grant institution, widely known for its research capabilities. Making use of the area’s highly educated workforce is also the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, one of the world's leaders in research on high-magnetic fields.
While Tallahassee isn’t known as a beach town, nowhere in Florida is far from the shore, and the capital is no exception. Students can (and do) drive less than an hour to reach a dozen different beaches ranging from the secluded to the tourist-slammed. When they do, they’ll pass the huge Apalachicola National Forest, which also gives students a huge range of outdoor activity options like hiking, camping or trail riding.
One standout reason for Tallahassee’s inclusion on our list is its diversity. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University is one of the largest historically black colleges in the nation, which is a big reason why the city made both was named the Best City for African Americans in 2016.