NRV number 17 best college town

NRV Named #17 Best College Town by AIER

VIRGINIA’S NEW RIVER VALLEY – The Blacksburg-Christiansburg-Radford MSA (known as the New River Valley) was ranked the number 17 best college town in America (2017) by the American Institute for Economic Research. The NRV is home to over 40,000 students thanks to Virginia Tech, Radford University, and New River Community College.

NRV best college town
“It should come as no surprise that Virginia Tech supplies Blacksburg with high levels of innovation. In terms of bars and restaurants, ask any Tech student and they’ll tell you to head downtown to T.O.T.S., Gillie’s, or Sharkey’s for some amazing brews and grub. The MSA of Blacksburg also includes Radford University, a key player in the regional economy.”

AIER compiled the Best College Town results based on economic, demographic, and quality of life data points. Each “college town” has a population of less than 250,000.

AIER also gave the NRV the number 3 ranking for bars and restaurants.

Virginia Tech and Radford University often receive accolades and top rankings for their academic programs and fun atmospheres. Most recently, Virginia was ranked as the #15 Best College Tailgate in the U.S.

For more info about the other college rankings, visit AIER.


Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

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