Last Updated: October 09, 2021
Kentucky - The Bluegrass State
Kentucky is located in the East-Central region of the US. It is a landlocked state bordered by the states of Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, Missouri, and Illinois. The Cherokee, Shawnee, Chickasaw, and Yuchi were the Native-American tribes that originally settled in this region. This state is the 25th most populous state with a population of about 4.51 million. The capital city of Kentucky is Frankfort and the largest city is Louisville. Kentucky received its statehood in 1792, making it the 15th state of the United States. Kentucky has a humid subtropical climate where the monthly temperature during summers can go as high as 31° C, while winters can plummet to -5° C.
Major Cities in Kentucky
Louisville is the biggest city in Kentucky with a population of approximately 633,000. The city was founded in 1778 by an American soldier named George Rogers Clark, in honor of the French monarch, King Louis XVI. Louisville is a major industrial hub with majors sectors like shipping and manufacturing. It is also a major center of the whiskey industry in the US with the Bourbon whiskey being its specialty. Major educational institutes such as the University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, etc., are situated in this city.
Situated in Fayette County, Lexington is the second-largest city in Kentucky with a population of about 323,000. It is popularly called the "Horse Capital of the World," due to the presence of several horse racecourses, and also because the horses for the famous Kentucky Derby event are nurtured and trained here. It was founded in 1782 and established as a city in 1831. The most prestigious institute of higher learning in the state, the University of Kentucky, is located in this city.
With a population of around 73,000, Bowling Green is the third-biggest city in Kentucky. It was founded in 1798 and is situated in Warren County. Bowling Green was later established as a city in 1812. The city is also a major industrial center with the presence of major companies like Houchens Industries, Sumitomo Electric Wiring Systems, Fort Dearborn Co., and so on. Popular attractions include the National Corvette Museum, Lost River Cave, Beech Bend Park, Historic Railpark and Train Museum, Fountain Square Park, Mammoth Cave National Park, and so on.
Owensboro has an estimated population of over 60,000 which makes it the fourth-largest city in Kentucky. It was first settled in 1797 and was later established as a city in 1817. The city of Owensboro was originally known as Yellowbanks. Brescia University, Kentucky Wesleyan College, Daymar College-Owensboro, etc., are some of the major educational institutes in this city. The city is also a major industrial and cultural hub. Some of the popular sites in Owensboro are O.Z. Tyler Distillery, Reid’s Orchard, Western Kentucky Botanical Garden, Owensboro Museum of Fine Art, and a lot more.
- Manufacturing, trade, agriculture, mining, are some of the predominant economic sectors in the state of Kentucky.
- Livestock farming plays a significant role in the economy of the Bluegrass State. Thoroughbred horses trained for the popular Derby events are especially important, followed by beef cattle.
- Kentucky chiefly manufactures electrical equipment, food products, automobiles, non-electrical machinery, chemicals, and apparel.
- Printing and publishing, along with tourism, is an important sector here.
- This state also is the major producer of coal in the USA.
- Kentucky is home to some of the largest companies namely Humana Inc., Ashland, Yum Brands, Texas Roadhouse, ResCare, Kindred Healthcare, Fruit of the Loom, Grupo Antolin, KFC, and Papa John’s Pizza.
- Despite the major problems faced due to the covid-19 pandemic, Kentucky seems to be showing great signs of economic growth. The unemployment rate has declined significantly from 5.0% in March 2021 to 4.3% in August 2021 (which is lower than the national average).
- Major areas that contributed to the state's economic recovery are trade, transportation, metals production, distribution and logistics, food processing, beverage, and agritech industry
Tuition Fee and Living Cost in Kentucky
The cost of living in Kentucky is lesser than the national average. Housing costs in this state are extremely low, followed by transportation. Some of the most affordable cities in Kentucky are Princeton, Flatwoods, Bardstown, and Dayton. The most expensive cities to live in are Pikeville, Murray, Morehead, and Versailles.
The cost of education on average is moderate in the state of Kentucky. A few public universities may be slightly expensive for out-of-state students. The most expensive institution in Kentucky may be Centre College (Danville). This is a private liberal arts college with a tuition fee of about $41,000 which is slightly higher than the national average.
List of Few Major Universities/Colleges
Some of the best universities/colleges in Kentucky are:
- University of Kentucky This is a prestigious public university situated in the second-largest city of Lexington. It was established on February 22, 1865, by an American lawyer and educator, John Bryan Bowman. It was originally founded as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Kentucky. With almost 31,000 students, the student-to-faculty ratio is 16:1. The university offers more than 200 academic programs, and some of the best majors include Marketing, Business, Psychology, Communications, and Nursing. The tuition fee for in-state undergraduate students is about $14,000 and roughly $33,000 for out-of-state students.
- University of Louisville Situated in the capital city of Louisville, this is another one of the most reputed universities in the state. It is a public research university that was established in 1798. The university is known for its excellent academic quality and student diversity. With almost 25,000 students and more than 2,000 faculty members, the student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1. Nursing, Communications, Education, Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement Administration, and Psychology are popular majors offered here. The tuition fee for in-state undergraduate students is about $13,000 and about $30,000 for out-of-state students.
- Centre College This is a private liberal arts college located in Danville. It was established on January 21, 1819, and is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The college is known for its vibrant campus, high-quality education, excellent internships, and study abroad opportunities. With over 1,400 students, the student-to-faculty ratio is 10:1. Popular majors offered in this college are International Studies, Economics, Psychology, and Sociology. The tuition fee is approximately $41,000 for all undergraduate students.
- Northern Kentucky University This is a well-known public institute in Highland Heights that was founded in 1968. The university is known for providing the best teaching and learning experience and has some of the best teachers. With over 17,000 students and more than 2,000 faculty members, the student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1. Business, Nursing, Liberal Arts and Humanities, Psychology, and Organizational Behavior Studies are some of the most sought-after majors here. The tuition fee for in-state undergraduate students is about $12,000 and around $22,000 for out-of-state students.
Scholarships/Financial Aid for Students
- Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES): This is a scholarship program that utilizes the scores achieved by the candidate during high school to earn toward post-secondary education. The award amount for this scholarship program is broken down into three marking criteria in high school, that is the grade point average, ACT/SAT scores, and the Advanced Placement (AP), or International Baccalaureate (IB), or Cambridge Advanced International (CAI) scores. To be qualified for the program the student must be a legal Kentucky resident.
The amount for the candidate's high school GPA each year will range from $125 to $500. The student should secure a minimum score of 2.5 GPA. The award amount for students who have obtained ACT scores ranges from $36 to $500. The amount will be offered if the student succeeds in securing a score from 15 to 28 and higher. The minimum SAT score should be 810.
To receive an additional amount, the student may gain good scores for exams like Advanced Placement (AP), or International Baccalaureate (IB), or Cambridge Advanced International (CAI). The award amount ranges from $200 to $300. The student is also required to be eligible for the free or reduced‐price lunch program in high school to receive the amount.
- Kentucky Tuition Grant: This is a need-based grant program designed to assist undergraduate students of Kentucky. To be eligible for the program, the student must be a US citizen, a legal resident of Kentucky, must pursue a 2-year or 4-year undergraduate degree from an accredited private institution on a full-time basis, and demonstrate financial need. the student must submit the FAFSA as early as possible. The award amount will be up to $3,000 per academic year.
- Kentucky Teacher Scholarship Program: This is a scholarship program for students who are pursuing a degree in Teacher Education. To be qualified for the program, the candidate must be a U.S. citizen, demonstrate economic need, and be a permanent Kentucky resident. The candidate is required to pursue a teacher education program in an accredited institution, or be a certified teacher pursuing a certification program for classroom teaching, and also maintain a satisfactory academic record. For every semester the student receives the scholarship award, they must teach at a school in Kentucky. The award amount will be up to $2,500 per semester.
- College Access Program Grant: This is a need-based grant for the undergraduate students of Kentucky. To be qualified for the program, the student must be a legal resident of Kentucky, display the required level of financial need, and pursue an associate or undergraduate degree from an accredited institution in Kentucky (pub, private, or technical). The student must be enrolled on a part-time or a full-time basis. The award amount will be up to $2,200 for students enrolled at a two-year institution and up to $2,900 for those enrolled at a four-year institution.
The Bluegrass State is widely known for its rich culture, history, horses, bourbon whiskey, and of course, Kentucky Fried Chicken. Famous personalities like Abraham Lincoln, Muhammad Ali, George Clooney, and Johnny Depp hail from the state of Kentucky. Apart from Kentucky Derby, the state is also well known for some of the most beautiful landscapes and tourist destinations. Some of the most popular sites are Daniel Boone National Forest, Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky Horse Park, Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park, Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, and several others. Some of the popular delicacies served here are Derby Pie, Hot Brown, Burgoo, Rolled Oysters, Beer Cheese, etc.
Universities & Colleges in Kentucky
*UG - Undergraduate
*G - Graduate
*in - In-state Fees
*out - Out-of-State Fees
- Recommended program (Top 250)