North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC) is a nationally-ranked, two-year institution located in North Central Iowa that serves students of all ages and abilities. Starting in 1918 as Mason City Junior College, NIACC has the distinct privilege of being the oldest Iowa community college. In 2018, the College celebrated its 100 year anniversary of providing high quality, community-responsive education to our students. Since 2012, the College has received numerous national rankings, including being ranked in the top 10 percent of all community colleges in the nation by the Aspen Institute.
Located two hours south of Minneapolis, MN and two hours north of Des Moines, IA, NIACC is big enough to provide many opportunities for students and small enough to give students the personal attention they need and deserve. We provide the four-year college experience at the two-year college price. The tuition at NIACC is generally about half the cost of the tuition at the state’s public universities, making the process of getting general education credits much more affordable for students and their families. We have transfer agreements with more than 40 four-year institutions, making it easy for NIACC graduates to transfer and continue their education.
The College sits on a 500-acre countryside campus that consists of modern, state-of-the-art facilities. In the past five years, the College has built and updated a new STEM wing, Health Simulation Center, Diesel Technology Lab, Careers labs, Student Learning Center, and Campus View Student Housing.
The College also operates Community Education Centers in Charles City, Garner, Hampton, Lake Mills and Osage. In mid-Fall 2021, NIACC will open the new John V. Hanson Career Center in Forest City, providing beautiful meeting spaces, and industry-leading equipment for our partner high schools and community members to use and enjoy.
With a staff of approximately 300, the College currently offers approximately 50 one- and two-year career programs, the first two years toward a bachelor’s degree in most fields and an array of continuing education opportunities for professional and personal growth.
On average, the College serves more than 3,700 degree students each year and thousands more through non-credit programs.
Top 120 Community College in the Country
The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program has named North Iowa Area Community College as one of the top 120 community colleges in the nation for the past four cycles. Based on strong and improving student outcomes—including in learning, completion rates, employment rates and earnings, and equity—15 percent of community colleges nationwide have been invited to apply for the Aspen Prize.
“NIACC is proud to be one of a very select group of community colleges invited to apply for the renowned Aspen Prize,” NIACC President Steve Schulz said. “The $1 million Aspen Prize is awarded every two years to the Nation’s best community college based on the successful outcomes of their students. To be recognized for the fourth time in row is a credit to our faculty and staff.”
NIACC was selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 public two-year colleges nationwide using publicly available data on student outcomes. Each cycle, the Aspen Institute identifies the top 120 community colleges — 10 percent of all institutions — using a quantitative formula that assesses performance and improvement in four areas:
- graduation rates
- degrees awarded
- student retention rates
- equity in student outcomes
North Iowa Area Community College was ranked #14 in the nation for student success, according to an article published in June 2012 on CNNMoney.com. This ranking is based on the percentage of students that graduated within three years or transferred to four-year colleges. NIACC was rated at a 72% success rate, meaning that 72% of all students who attend NIACC either complete or have a successful transfer to a four-year institution within three years.
Read the complete article: http://money.cnn.com/pf/college/community-colleges/?iid=EL