Whether you're visiting Milwaukee to check out one of its many schools or are a long-term resident who wants to go to college nearby, there are plenty of options for great universities in and around the Milwaukee area.
From the relatively small, specialized science programs of the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) to the large state school experience of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, there is an educational experience available here to fit all personalities and student needs.
With over 70,000 students across its 11 major universities, Milwaukee is a great city to live in for college. Although there are several even smaller schools, like the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Area Technical College, and the Milwaukee Institute for Art and Design, the seven biggest universities and colleges are below.
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is the second-largest university in the state and includes 12 different schools and colleges—from a college of nursing to a school of the arts. Accounting for just under half of the total college enrollment in Milwaukee at 30,000 students, UW-Milwaukee is located on Milwaukee's East Side and tuition typically ranges between $25,000 and $37,000 per year.
Marquette University, the fourth largest in the state, is a private Catholic Jesuit school and includes 12 different colleges on its campuses—from the school of dentistry to law school. With an enrollment of nearly 12,000 students and an annual tuition of around $37,000, this downtown university offers a slightly more intimate environment and a curated curriculum.
Cardinal Stritch University
Cardinal Stritch University is another smaller private Catholic school that includes four different colleges with offers specialized courses on arts, sciences, education, and nursing as well as evening business and management programs and classes for working adults. With an annual enrollment of 5,800, this $27,000-a-year college is located in Fox Point on Milwaukee's north shore.
Concordia University is a private Lutheran school with a focus on liberal arts and features many undergraduate majors and graduate disciplines. Highlights of this relatively inexpensive private school's course catalog include religious and business studies and the new school of pharmacy. Located in Mequon on Milwaukee's north shore, Concordia Mequon has an annual enrollment of only about 3,830 students and an annual tuition of $27,000.
Established in 1846, Carroll University is the oldest four-year higher learning center in the state. Carroll is a private school that features a wide range of undergraduate disciplines and graduate degrees in education and software engineering as well as entry-level coursework in physical therapy. Just over 3,000 students attend this school with a $30,000 tuition. It's located in Waukesha a few miles west of downtown Milwaukee.
Located on the west side of Milwaukee, Alverno is a private Catholic college for women which offers undergraduate studies within four different schools: business, education, nursing, and arts and sciences. Alverno also offers graduate programs in business, education, and nursing. Annual tuition typically costs around $20,060 and 2,800 students are enrolled in classes at Alverno College.
Milwaukee School of Engineering
The Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) is a private college with a strong science focus. Fields of study fall under seven different academic departments, from architectural engineering and building construction to nursing. This small private college is located in downtown Milwaukee and has an annual enrollment of 2,600 and average yearly tuition of $29,520.