Where We Are

Idaho and the Treasure Valley as a Learning Laboratory

Boise State University’s metropolitan location provides an excellent teaching laboratory for applied learning.  Boise and much of Idaho has experienced a population boom in the past 30 years. The Treasure Valley now has half of the state’s population, and the Boise-Nampa-Caldwell Metropolitan Statistical Area has grown from about 150,000 to 640,000 between 1980 and 2016.  Regional experts estimate 1 million people in this valley by the year 2030.  This makes the Treasure Valley and other communities in Idaho an ideal place to study urbanization an community development.

Boise State University’s proximity to the state capitol and its location in one of the fastest growing regions in the West provides important opportunities for educators to make use of experiential learning, whereby students apply the skills and practices learned in the classroom to real world situations.

Academic programs in urban studies often focus purely on global and industrial cities. Few consider the unique dynamics of cities and communities in the Intermountain and Pacific Northwest. Boise State University’s program addresses the cultural, economic, and political factors that frame the American West experience with its smaller cities, urban/rural interdependence, geographic isolation, and environmental history.

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Why Boise is the Place to Be

Boise is a Best Place for:

Consistently ranked in “Best Places” lists, Boise combines a small-town feel with big city excitement. Surrounded by mountains with a river that cuts right through campus, Boise is a safe city with an affordable cost of living, a thriving local arts community and a burgeoning cluster of high-tech start-ups.

  • Top Three for Outdoor Adventure (Outbound)
  • “Healthiest Cities” (Women’s/Men’s Health)
  • “Raising a Family” (Forbes)
  • “Safest Places to Live” (Business Insider)
  • “Top 10 Places to Live” (Relocate America)
  • “Top 10 Downtowns in America” (Livability.com)
  • “Best River Towns” (Outside)
  • “Hottest Music Cities in America” (The Atlantic)