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College Towns For Great Retirement Living Keep You Young

Updated on September 8, 2016
Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Ms. Inglish is an award-winning Employment & Training pro with regional records and tens of thousands placed into gainful employment.

Picturesque North Carolina
Picturesque North Carolina | Source

Younger Living

During the 2000s and early 2010s, a number of organizations like CNNMoney Magazine, and others have recommended retirement to college towns across America,. They did this because of lower costs and comparatively higher standards of living offered to retirees that relocated to these spots. Another reason is the the opportunity to enroll in college classes free-of-charge, as in The Ohio State University's Program 60.

In 2012, those who study retirement and aging have found that placing older Senior Citizens back into a setting like that of the college of their youth can result in the body responding in "younger" ways. People even feel younger. This was confirmed by two studies so far, one from George Mason University and one done less formally by the BBC in the UK.

Many "college town" cities support one or more 2- or 4-year colleges or universities that have arrangements with retirement centers to provide lifelong learning activities to residents. This works best where the retirement community is located close to the institution of higher learning and both entities cooperate in joint events. Many of these places support museums, theaters, sorts activates, and other likeable things to do. One example is the museum park pictured above in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Thomas Sayre: "Gyre"

North Carolina Museum of Art and Museum Park; Raleigh, a corner of the Research Triangle.
North Carolina Museum of Art and Museum Park; Raleigh, a corner of the Research Triangle. | Source

Many "college town" cities support one or more 2- or 4-year colleges or universities that have arrangements with retirement centers to provide lifelong learning activities to residents.

Best Of the Best

The Top 10 College Towns that help keep retirees young are listed below, as found by George Mason and BBC researchers.

My top choice is the Research Triangle in North Carolina. This choice is based on the quality and number of Universities, attractions, retirement job possibilities, and reasonably-priced housing among the research institutes in the Triangle.

This is a 13-county region connected by Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. Many communities fill in the 13 counties, with plenty of places to live close to education and employment opportunities.

For many of the Top 10 College Towns for Retirement, links are included below for city reviews. Highlights of Claremont, California are offered further below.

The Research Triangle

show route and directions
A markerRaleigh NC -
Raleigh, NC, USA
get directions

B markerDurham NC -
Durham, NC, USA
get directions

C markerResearch Triangle Park - Durham -
Research Triangle Park, Durham, NC, USA
get directions

D markerChapel Hill NC -
Chapel Hill, NC, USA
get directions

  1. Boise, Idaho -- Boise State University - Discounted fees for Senior Citizens; University of Idaho - University of Idaho Retirees Association.
  2. Claremont, California -- Claremont Avenues for Lifelong Learning This is a free program allowing seniors to audit college classes andparticipate in field trips.(Please see information below.)
  3. Fort Collins Colorado -- Colorado State University
  4. The Research Triangle -- Duke, University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University. North Carolina is one of the 25 Best Cities for Staying Young.
  5. Clemson, South Carolina -- Osher Life-Long Learning Institute
  6. Albuquerque, New Mexico -- University of New Mexico
  7. Ithaca, New York -- Cornell University and Ithaca College intergenerational learning
  8. Princeton, New Jersey -- Princeton University. Shots of Princeton were used to represent Princeton Plainsboro Hospital in the TV series House MD. Westminster College of Arts of Rider University.
  9. Williamstown, Massachusetts -- Williams College
  10. Asheville, North Carolina -- University of North Carolina at Asheville. North Carolina Center for Creative Retirement.

Other College Towns That Are Great For Retirees

  • State College, PA -- The Village at Penn State University, for Senior Citizens. This is a retirement community for active seniors and is owned by the university. Its residents are welcomed and encouraged to attend dozens of functions, celebrations, trips, and educational workshops that keep them interested in life and the large community. These seniors remain productive and happy with the help of the university. They stay young!
  • Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Ann Arbor, Michigan -- The Arts Fair in the streets at Michigan State University is enough to persuade many seniors to retire to Ann Arbor. Many other annual events keep the city interesting.
  • Gainesville, Florida

Claremont, California For Seniors and Others

Highlights of Claremont, California

The City of Claremont supports a well developed Seniors department that offers several interesting services. One of these is a program with local Claremont Colleges for Senior Citizens ages 60 and older to audit classes at no charge. many Senior still work, so the city offers an After Work entertainment and social program.

Enrichment classes, support groups, clubs, and nutrition instruction are other parts of the Seniors services. Trips for Senior Citizens involve much more than a short hop to the local mall. Seniors can visit the Reagan Presidential Library, Museums, upscale performances, and many more.

Claremont Transportation is Efficient and Expanding

  • Foothill Transit - Buses

    All the buses in this system are planned to be powered by electricity by the year 2030. Foothill Transit joins transportation authorities of 22 cities in the San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys. These buses provide public transportation to the Greater Los Angeles Area.

  • Welcome to Metrolink

    Metrolink is Southern California's regional passenger rail system with 55 train stations across the region. Get train schedules, fare information, discounts, and news at

Route 66

Claremont is located along old route 66, the Mother Highway of America.

Claremont, 30 Miles From LA

show route and directions
A markerClaremont CA -
Claremont, CA, USA
get directions

B markerLos Angeles CA -
Los Angeles, CA, USA
get directions

At the Botanic Garden
At the Botanic Garden | Source

Selected Attractions

  • Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden at 1500 N. College Ave; Claremont CA 91711 -- Senior discount for ages 65 and older. At least 86 acres of native-plant gardens in three subdivisions.
  • Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theater at 455 West Foothill Boulevard; Claremont CA 91711 -- Popular first run theatrical productions.
  • Dueling Piano Lounge at 555 West Foothill Boulevard; Claremont CA 91711 -- Food and beverage specials, with a piano bar.
  • ALF Museum of Paleontology at 1175 West Baseline Road; Claremont CA.
  • Fiske Musical Instrument Museum at 450 North College Way; Claremont CA 91711
  • Dead Sea Scrolls Project - Claremont Graduate School at 1325 N. College Ave.; Claremont CA 91711. The school owns quite an extensive array of materials related to the scrolls, the Bible, and scriptural studies. Images of the Dead Sea Scrolls are just the beginning.
  • Devil's Punchbowl - Hiking trails 23 miles north of Claremont.
  • Rubidoux Drive-In - Drive-In Theater 18 miles east of Claremont. Movies and Swap Meets.

Colleges For Senior Auditing Programs

show route and directions
A markerClaremont Graduate School at 1325 N. College Ave.; Claremont CA 91711 -
1325 North College Avenue, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
get directions

B markerScripps Women's College; 1030 Columbia Avenue Claremont, CA 91711 -
1030 N Columbia Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
get directions

C markerClaremont McKenna College; 888 Columbia Avenue Claremont, CA 91711 -
888 N Columbia Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
get directions

D markerPitzer; 1050 N. Mills Avenue Claremont, CA 91711 -
Pitzer Hall, 1050 N Mills Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
get directions

E markerPomona; 333 N. College Way Claremont, CA 91711 -
333 N College Way, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
get directions

F markerHarvey Mudd College; 301 Platt Boulevard Claremont, California 91711 -
Harvey Mudd College
get directions

Lupines at the garden.
Lupines at the garden. | Source

During the summer of 2015, the ratio of the number of unemployed individuals in Claremont to the number of listed job openings was 1:1, or a job for every unemployed person. However, not all unemployed persons can qualify for every job requirements.

Many public gardens greet visitors to great college towns.
Many public gardens greet visitors to great college towns. | Source

Claremont Snapshot: Highest Demand Jobs

Over 49,000 jobs weer listed throughout Summer 2012, increasing by over 20% to to 60,000+ job listings by Summer 2015 and Summer 2016.

Highest demand jobs consistently are:

  1. Sales Representatives
  2. Salespeople, including Commission Salespeople
  3. Academic Tutors, including Music Teachers
  4. Truck Drivers - Number One growing job nationwide.
  5. LPN, LVN, and RN Nurses
  6. Speech Therapists
  7. Occupational and Physical Therapists
  8. Manufacturing Engineers
  9. Project Engineers
  10. Software Engineers and Network Engineers

Casual dining jobs are increasing as well at Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, including Managers and Area Supervisors.

Largest Job-Advertising Claremont Employers

  1. PetSmart
  2. So Cal Pizza
  3. McDonalds Restaurants, Domino's Pizza and Starbucks
  4. The Home Depot: DIY, home and garden
  5. CVS Health & Pharmacy: Managers, clerks, pharmacy technicians and more
  6. Pep Boys: Automotive parts and service
  7. Wells Fargo: Banking
  8. Perkins & Marie Callender's: Perkins Pancake Houses and frozen foods
  9. Target Stores
  10. R.E. Garrison: Truck drivers, demand increasing rapidly since 2014.

© 2012 Patty Inglish


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    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      I think they are fun, exciting places!

    • profile image

      leann2800 5 years ago

      The statistics are very useful. I do think colleges area great placeto retire.They offer a lot of cultural resources for little or nothing.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      breakfastpop - Welcome back from vacation; we have missed you. I agree about college towns. The energy is BIG.

      twoseven - Madison sounds like a fantastic place and I'll have a look.

      Maren - I feel the same - Maybe when I am 90.

    • Maren Morgan M-T profile image

      Maren Elizabeth Morgan 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Thanks for the research, Patty. I may retire one of these decades. ;=D

    • twoseven profile image

      twoseven 5 years ago from Madison, Wisconsin

      Great hub! I would think that Madison, Wisconsin would be a good place to add to the list as well. We just moved here, and it is incredibly family friendly, easy to get around, and also seems very "senior friendly" for lack of a better term. There's a huge university, and also lots of free events for people of all ages to enjoy (lots of free music, farmer's market during the summer, lots of festivals, etc). It's also fairly affordable, and they have some really nice senior oriented living arrangements (apartments and assisted living, as well as nursing homes) close to the capitol and downtown. It's a long ways a way for me, but I would love to retire here!

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 5 years ago

      This is a great hub, Patty. I have always believed that college towns were the best places in the world to retire. The energy is there in so many fabulous ways. Up useful, interesting and awesome.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Thanks for adding a couple of cities to the list, bankscottage. I will check them out as well.

    • bankscottage profile image

      bankscottage 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Patty, great Hub. I have been thinking about retiring in a college town for numerous reasons. The question is which town. Also, I would like a smaller town.

      I have spent a few days in Asheville and like the location in the mountains. I live about 60 miles from State College and have a son that lives there. The college is so big (student population wise), that I think it is larger than the town. Or, at least it feels that way. I love the Berkshires and have been to Williamstown (I like Great Barrington better).

      One of my favorite college small towns didn't make your list, Brunswick, Maine, home of Bowden College. Think Williamstown with the ocean. Compared to Williamstown, Brunswick is closer to interstates, larger airports, and bigger cities, such as Portland, ME (visit and then go home). Brunswick, while not in the mountains, they are close by. The weather isn't great in the winter, but probably no different than Boise or Williamstown.

      Very interesting hub, voted up.