Best Community Colleges in Iowa by Salary Potential

Land a career that will pay you back for your associate degree (and then some). Check out Iowa’s top two-year colleges with the highest-paid graduates.

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RankSchool NameSchool SectorEarly Career Pay
Mid-Career Pay
% High Meaning
% STEM Degrees
Rank:1School Name:Briar Cliff UniversitySchool Sector:Private not-for-profitEarly Career Pay:$45,400Mid-Career Pay:$66,400% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:5%
Rank:2School Name:Northwest Iowa Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$44,300Mid-Career Pay:$65,800% High Meaning:64%% STEM Degrees:0%
Rank:3School Name:William Penn UniversitySchool Sector:Private not-for-profitEarly Career Pay:$44,200Mid-Career Pay:$64,800% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:7%
Rank:4School Name:Indian Hills Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$42,400Mid-Career Pay:$64,100% High Meaning:61%% STEM Degrees:4%
Rank:5School Name:Iowa Western Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$40,000Mid-Career Pay:$61,400% High Meaning:57%% STEM Degrees:4%
Rank:6School Name:Iowa Central Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$41,000Mid-Career Pay:$60,900% High Meaning:58%% STEM Degrees:3%
Rank:7School Name:Des Moines Area Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$40,200Mid-Career Pay:$60,800% High Meaning:53%% STEM Degrees:4%
Rank:8School Name:Western Iowa Tech Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$39,300Mid-Career Pay:$60,400% High Meaning:55%% STEM Degrees:4%
Rank:9School Name:North Iowa Area Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$38,800Mid-Career Pay:$60,100% High Meaning:65%% STEM Degrees:1%
Rank:10School Name:Eastern Iowa Community College DistrictSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$39,600Mid-Career Pay:$59,900% High Meaning:66%% STEM Degrees:2%
Rank:11School Name:Kirkwood Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$40,500Mid-Career Pay:$59,100% High Meaning:59%% STEM Degrees:7%
Rank:12School Name:Northeast Iowa Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$40,600Mid-Career Pay:$58,700% High Meaning:64%% STEM Degrees:2%
Rank:13School Name:Ellsworth Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$39,900Mid-Career Pay:$58,000% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:0%
Rank:14School Name:Iowa Lakes Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$38,300Mid-Career Pay:$57,900% High Meaning:61%% STEM Degrees:0%
Rank:15School Name:Southwestern Community College (Iowa)School Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$39,300Mid-Career Pay:$56,800% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:3%
Rank:16School Name:Upper Iowa UniversitySchool Sector:Private not-for-profitEarly Career Pay:$37,500Mid-Career Pay:$55,500% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:3%
Rank:17School Name:Southeastern Community College (Iowa)School Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$39,300Mid-Career Pay:$55,200% High Meaning:60%% STEM Degrees:4%
Rank:18School Name:Marshalltown Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$37,900Mid-Career Pay:$54,200% High Meaning:65%% STEM Degrees:1%
Rank:19School Name:Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological SeminarySchool Sector:Private not-for-profitEarly Career Pay:$37,800Mid-Career Pay:$54,100% High Meaning:-% STEM Degrees:0%
Rank:20School Name:Hawkeye Community CollegeSchool Sector:PublicEarly Career Pay:$38,100Mid-Career Pay:$53,300% High Meaning:53%% STEM Degrees:4%

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College Student

Curious about the best 2-year colleges in Iowa by graduate salaries? The Hawkeye state has strong employment options in biotechnology, agriculture, manufacturing and finance/insurance industries.

The largest associate degree granting institution in our Iowa database is Ashford University, with nearly 50,000 undergraduates. (High-performing public colleges, like Indian Hills Community College, Western Iowa Tech Community College and Iowa Western Community College are all under 8,000 undergraduate students.)

Three of the lowest median mid-career salaries for associate degree holders in Iowa come from alumni of private colleges: Kaplan University in Davenport, Ashford University and the AIB College of Business. Kaplan and Ashford are for-profit colleges.