In many ways, North Dakota’s population is very different from the nation as a whole. Its percentage of American Indians and Alaska Natives, 5.5%, more than quadruples the national average, and its percentage of other minorities is well below the national average. Its religious makeup, however, largely mirrors that of the country’s: 25% of the state is Catholic, compared to 24% nationwide; 24% are evangelical Protestant, compared to 26% nationwide; and 12% are religiously unaffiliated compared to 16% nationwide.
The percentage of people who view religion as “very important” in their lives, 56%, is identical to the national average. North Dakota, however, is home to a much greater percentage of mainline Protestants than the national average: 35% compared to 18%.
Education in North Dakota
North Dakota is home to 21 degree-granting colleges and universities, most of which are public, and some of which are tribal. Three of its institutions, however, are Christian colleges. The Christian colleges in North Dakota serve a varied student population. Jamestown College, a Presbyterian college in Jamestown, serves just fewer than 1,000 students. Trinity Bible College, a college serving fewer than 300 students in Ellendale, is affiliated with the Assemblies of God. University of Mary serves more than 3,000 students in Bismarck, and is affiliated with the Catholic Church.
North Dakota’s higher education has struggled recently and it will take some effort to get the state back on track. Right now, its six-year college graduation rate is 48.1%, much lower than the national average of 56%. Its college enrollment from 2005 to 2010 increased 15.2%, which is 5% slower than the national average. And from 2007-2008 to 2020-2021, the number of new public high school graduates is supposed to decrease 13%, compared to a decrease of .6% nationwide.
Still, there are several advantages to attending one of the colleges in North Dakota. The state ranks tenth in per capita personal income, so students who choose to stay in the state after college can potentially earn more than the national average. The state’s colleges and universities have recently increased spending on research and development by 9.1%, compared to 6.9% nationwide, and the schools’ research spending is far more equitable than national averages.
Nationally, 57% of research funds go toward life sciences, leaving other fields with comparatively little. In North Dakota, life science fields still get the most funds, at 41.7%, but spending on most other fields is far greater than national averages — engineering gets 30.6% of funds, fully twice the national average; social sciences get 6.9% of funds, more than twice the national average; and environmental sciences, physical sciences, and “other” sciences also have more funding devoted to them than the national average. Students interested in pursuing life sciences, engineering, social sciences, environmental sciences, or physical sciences could really benefit from studying in North Dakota.
Working in North Dakota
North Dakota expects to see statewide employment growth of 18.2% by 2020, and many jobs and industries will see much higher growth than that. Among the jobs that will see drastic growth are many that require a college degree, such as market research analysts and marketing specialists, at 46.7% growth; cost estimators, at 40.1%; surveyors, at 39.1%; personal financial advisors, at 35.5%; and database administrators, at 35%. Overall, those in business, architecture, and engineering will see the most growth.
North Dakota Christian colleges offer degrees to prepare students for the state’s growing workforce. Students will likely succeed in the state’s future economy by earning a degree in civil engineering, architecture, finance, marketing, or surveying technology. To find the Christian college in North Dakota that’s best for you, search our list below.