Keene State College - Colleges of Distinction - Colleges of Distinction
Keene State College
"Keene State College prepares promising students to think critically and creatively, to engage in...

Keene State College

Keene, New Hampshire

Keene State College prepares promising students to think critically and creatively, to engage in active citizenship, and to pursue meaningful work. As the public liberal arts college of New Hampshire, Keene State offers an enriching campus opportunity and achieves academic excellence through the integration of teaching, learning, scholarship, and service.

Student Profile

Fall 2015 Enrollment
4,186 undergraduate students
98% of undergrad students are full time
44% male 56% female
56% of students are from out of state

Faculty Profile

217 full-time faculty, 219 part-time faculty, 16:1 student/faculty ratio

Residence Life

Fall 2015
94% of first year students live on campus
53% of all students live on campus

School Location

Keene is a small town (pop. 23,000) situated in the heart of New England. It’s just a five-minute walk from Keene State’s campus to stores, coffee shops, and cultural events in downtown Keene. From outdoor activities to local boutiques, everyone can find something to enjoy!

High-Impact Practices

Read more about the importance of High-Impact Practices

First-Year Seminars and Experiences  
Common Intellectual Experiences  
Learning Communities X
Writing-Intensive Courses X
Collaborative Assignments and Projects X
Undergraduate Research X
Diversity/Global Learning X
Service Learning, Community-Based Learning X
Internships/Coops/Practicums X
Capstone Courses and Projects/Senior Experience X

Retention Fall 2015

73% of students began in Fall 2014 and returned in Fall 2015 (full time, first time freshmen)

6 Year Graduation Rate 2015

63% of students graduated in 6 years


Nonresident aliens 0%
Hispanic/Latino 4%
Black or African American 1%
White 87%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%
Asian 1%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0%
Two or more races 2%
Race and/or ethnicity unknown 5%


NCAA Division III. 18 varsity sports including baseball, lacrosse, softball, field hockey, track and field, cross country, swimming and diving, and volleyball.  Mascot: Owl.  Colors: White and red

Academic Programs

American Studies, BA; Anthropology/Sociology, BA; Architecture, BS; Art, BA/BFA (Graphic Design, Studio Art); Biology, BA/BS; Chemistry, BA/BS; Chemistry-Physics, BS; Communication, BA (Communication Studies, Philosophy); Computer Science, BS (General CS, Information Systems, Software Engineering, System & Networking, Web Development, Computational Mathematics); Criminal Justice Studies, BA; Earth/Space Science, BA; Economics, BA; Education, BS (Early Childhood Development, Elementary Education, Secondary Education, Special Education – Elementary); Engineering, BS (transfer program); English, BA (Literature, Writing); Environmental Studies, BS; Film Studies, BA (Critical Studies, Film Production) French, BA, General Science, BA, Geography, BA, Geology, BS; Health Science, BS (Health Promotion and Wellness ((Community Health, Behavior and Health)) Nutrition, Addictions); History, BA (U.S. History, European History ((19th-Century Studies, 20th-Century Studies)); Holocaust and Genocide Studies, BA; Individualized Major, BA/BS; Journalism, BA (News Media, Public Relations, Multimedia Journalism); Management, BS; Mathematics, BA (Mathematics, Secondary Teaching, Middle School/Junior High Teaching); Mathematics Education for Elementary Teachers, BA; Mathematics-Physics, BS; Music, BA; Music Composition, BM; Music Education, BM (Instrumental, Choral), Music Performance, BM, Music Technology, BM, Nursing, BS, Physical Education, BS (Teacher Certification, Exercise Science (Health, Coaching)); Political Science, BA; Psychology, BA; Safety and Occupational Health Applied Sciences, BS; Sociology, BA; Spanish, BA; Sustainable Product Design and Innovation, BS; Theatre and Dance, BA (Theatre Arts (Acting, Directing, Design and Technical Theatre)) Dance (Choreography and Performance, Dance Education); Women’s and Gender Studies, BA

Keene State’s students make connections — with dedicated faculty, with each other, with the community, with the world, with their futures. Opportunities for involvement are everywhere.

What happens in the classroom doesn’t stay in the classroom. It gets put into action through travel, field research, conferences, student media, concerts, dances – the sky is the limit for student involvement. Many students put their learning to use in more traditional arenas as well, but they have those opportunities from the time they arrive on campus, whether their interests are in undergraduate research or performance.

In addition, Keene State students completed 104,124 hours of service in 2013–14. This includes student community service work, service-based trips, service-learning courses, and internships that meet the criteria for community service.

Global engagement is encouraged for all students, and opportunities exist for entire semesters abroad, faculty-led trips that are part of Keene State classes, and global service.

Keene State also offers an Honors Program for those who qualify.

Activities Offered

Campus Ministries X
Choral groups X
Concert band X
Dance X
Drama/theater X
International Student Organization X
Jazz band X
Literary magazine X
Marching band  
Model UN  
Music ensembles X
Musical theater X
Pep band  
Radio station X
Student government X
Student newspaper X
Student-run film society X
Symphony orchestra  
Television station X
Yearbook X

Professors are committed to the success of each student, and their priority is undergraduate education. They assist in research projects, lend advice regarding course material, and embrace the value that every individual brings to the classroom.

More than half of classes have fewer than 20 students. Only 1% of classes have more than 50 students.

Keene State’s required Integrative Studies Program, a broad and balanced survey of arts and sciences, helps students in any major connect the dots to other fields of study.

Common Core

Arts/fine arts X
Computer literacy  
English (including composition) X
Foreign languages  
History X
Humanities X
Mathematics X
Sciences (biological or physical) X
Social science X

Class size breakdown

Size 2-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-99 100+ Total
Number of Classes 96 338 244 109 22 9 0 818

Keene State offers its students a bustling community of activities to pursue. Students have access to over 100 clubs, including sororities and fraternities. Keene State encourages all of its students to get involved in campus activities and organizations. The College believes that involvement helps students develop into stronger individuals. Students who participate in extra-curriculars are more likely to grow socially and maintain an excitement for their college experience.

First year and sophomore students live on campus, as do many juniors and seniors. Living-Learning Communities are available for students who want to combine their interests with their housing – and often come with benefits like peer mentoring, special field trips, and networking opportunities.

Between clubs, teams, and other activities, there’s something for everyone – or room to develop it.

Keene State is a Division III school, offering 18 athletic programs. The Owls participate in the Little East Conference. Many Owls have won academic honors on top of their amazing athletic achievements. Students also have the option to join an intramural or club sport.

The campus boasts two art galleries, frequent performances of many kinds, as well as lectures, book discussions, and more.


Coed dorms X
Men’s dorms  
Women’s dorms X
Apartments for married students  
Apartments for single students X
Special housing for disabled students  
Special housing for international students  
Fraternity/sorority housing X
Cooperative housing  
Theme housing X
Wellness housing  
Other housing options  

Keene State’s  “real-world education” is a broad and balanced program of study that gives each student the power to think critically, act creatively, and serve the greater good. Students innovate and collaborate, while gaining an ability to integrate knowledge across fields and make new connections.

In a 2013 survey of Keene State’s 2012 graduates, 94% were either employed or pursuing further education. Of those employed, 73% reported their work was related to their studies.

More than 40 percent of Keene State students are the first in their family to attend college.

Keene State alumni are an accomplished group of people, having made differences across fields and industries, serving their communities and demonstrating the value of their education in all endeavors.

As Keene State’s website states, “Most colleges prepare students to move up in the world. That’s not enough. At Keene State College, we dare our students to change the world.”


Admissions Fall 2015

5,674 Total Applicants
4,464 Total Admissions
920 Total Freshmen Enrollment

78.67% of applicants admitted

Admissions Deadlines for 2016-17 Admission

Rolling Admission? No

Closing Date: April 1

Admissions Factors

Rigor of secondary school record
Academic GPA
Application Essay

Class rank
Standardized test scores
Extracurricular activities
Character/personal qualities
First generation
Alumni/ae relation
Racial/ethnic status
Volunteer work
Work experience
Level of applicant’s interest

Freshmen Profile Fall 2015

  25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Critical Reading 440 550
SAT Math 440 550
SAT Writing 440 540
SAT Essay    
ACT Composite    
ACT Math 19 24
ACT English 17 24
ACT Writing 18 24


Net Price Calculator


  In-State Out-of-State
Tuition $10,700 $18,800
Fees $2,528 $2,528
Total $13,228 $21,328
Room and Board (on campus) $9,712 $9,712
Room Only $- $-
Board Only $- $-
Estimated Total On Campus $22,940 $31,040


Average Financial Aid Packages 2014-2015

$11,636 First year students
$11,387 All undergrads

Financial Aid Breakdown 2014-2015

62% on average, the percentage of need that was met
11% of financial need students that had need fully met

$6,868 Average need-based scholarship or grant award
$4,325 Average need-based loan

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