For students who wish to study in the state of New Mexico, there are a handful of educational options. Within the state there are eight public universities and colleges and seven private four-year institutions. In addition to the four-year schools in New Mexico, there also are nine two-year schools consisting of community colleges and military academies. New Mexico is the home to several specialty art schools that are designed to help students either become artists in their own right or allow them entrance to larger art schools across the country.
One of the most unique art schools in New Mexico is the Institute of American Indian Art, which is a four-year public institution located in the city of Sante Fe. It is a tribal college that was founded in 1962. The school aims to attract students from many different tribes, and the goal is that all aspiring American Indian artist who are at the forefront of the industry will attend school at the institute. There are several different areas of study for students to focus on, including creative writing, studio art, visual communications, museum studies, indigenous liberal studies and new media art. There are about 250 students enrolled in this school.
In addition to the art schools in New Mexico, there also are research institutions in the state. The University of New Mexico is the most prominent research university in the state. This public university, which was founded in 1889 and is located in Albuquerque, has the largest enrollment in the state. In addition to the Albuquerque campus, there also are extension campuses in five other cities throughout New Mexico. Considered one of the best schools in the American West, the University of New Mexico is known across the country for its graduate level engineering programs. Famous alumni from the school include author and journalist Sarah Bird as well as NFL player turned reality TV star Hank Baskett.
The second largest school in the state is New Mexico State University, which is nestled in the heart of Las Cruces, New Mexico. It is a land-grand institution, and was founded as an agriculture college in 1888. New Mexico State University stands out among other educational opportunities in the state because it is the only research school in the country which borders Mexico that is considered a Hispanic-serving institution by the federal government. This means the school works to provide first generation Hispanic students who might be low income with a quality education.