Why Choose Ridgewater?​​


Providing a high-quality education is top priority at Ridgewater, and we have the accolades to prove it.

  • Ridgewater has been named by the Aspen Institute as one of the top 120 community colleges in the country, ranking us in the top 10% of all institutions.
  • Ridgewater was acknowledged as the 41st best community college out of 1,665 community colleges in the Nation by Washington Monthly magazine.
  • Named as #1 Best Community College in Minnesota for Career Preparedness by ACT.
  • 96% job placement rate for graduates.
  • To accomplish this takes outstanding faculty, such as our Fulbright Scholars, Sam Nelson, history instructor, and Dr. Kathy Steffen, English instructor, as well as Computer-aided Drafting and Design instructor Stacey Nass and English instructor Mary Gruis who have been named Educators of the Year by the MnSCU board of Trustees.


Affordable tuition combined with high-quality instruction delivers tremendous educational value. Save over $4,000 taking the first two years of your four-year degree at Ridgewater versus going directly to a Minnesota public university.

Job Placement

Ridgewater has averaged a placement rate of more than 96 percent over the past five years in our career and technical programs. Learn the skills you need to start a great paying career in two years or less. 


Small class sizes offer personal attention. All classes are taught by college instructors - not teaching assistants. They're not just teaching from a textbook, they're teaching from experience.


Studies show that students who begin at a community college perform as well or better in their junior and senior year compared with students who start at the university as a freshman.


Taking general education at Ridgewater is a cost-effective way to explore various fields to determine what path is right for you.  Choose from over 100 educational opportunities in liberal arts transfer disciplines and career training. ​Online courses and programs are also available.


Friendly and inviting campuses offer opportunities to be engaged inside and outside of the classroom. Transitioning from high school to college can be easier at Ridgewater.


Take classes online or on campus, full time or part time. Ridgewater's perfect for individuals who have family or work commitments that make a traditional schedule difficult. You can even complete an entire AA degree online, as well as some technical programs.

Transfer Credits

Ridgewater AA degrees are based in the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC), a core group of credits guaranteed to transfer to any public university in Minnesota.  Many technical programs also articulate to four-year universities.

Hands-On Experience

Learning opportunities and lab experiences allow you to apply what you've learned in the classroom. If you like to learn by doing, this is the place for you!

Ridgewater College is an equal opportunity employer and educator.