Michigan State Info and Higher Education Facts

Information about Michigan

Michigan is a large Midwestern state that includes two peninsulas and shoreline abutting every Great Lake but Lake Ontario. With about 9.9 million residents, based on 2015 U.S. census estimates, Michigan is the U.S.'s eighth-largest state by population. Its major cities include Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, Lansing, Flint and Detroit. Lansing is the state capital, and Detroit, with around 680,000 residents reported in 2014 census estimates, is the largest city.

Michigan has more miles of shoreline than any other in the contiguous United States, and only Alaska has more overall. The Lower Peninsula, which shares land borders with Indiana and Ohio, is where the vast majority of the population and all the major cities are found. Jutting northward between lakes Michigan and Huron, the Lower Peninsula is a region of rolling topography, agriculture and industry.

To the north, the Upper Peninsula, which connects to northeastern Wisconsin, is a sparsely-populated region known for its mineral and lumber resources and unspoiled wilderness. The nation's oldest mountain range, the Porcupine Mountains, is found on the Upper Peninsula. Life in all areas of Michigan is defined by water and forests; the state has the country's most extensive state forest system, while nearly a million private boats are registered by Michigan's residents.

Higher Education

Michigan has about 120 public and private non-profit colleges, universities and career and specialty schools. The University of Michigan's flagship campus is found at Ann Arbor. The University of Michigan is ranked 29th among national universities, according to 2016 U.S. News & World Report ranking data. Its undergraduate business program was ranked 4th best nationally, while its undergraduate program in engineering was ranked 6th. Many of its graduate programs were highly ranked, too, such as the primary care program in its medical school (4th), the earth sciences program (8th) and the health care management program (1st).

Michigan State University is the largest school in the state. It enrolls about 50,000 students at its East Lansing campus. Other large colleges and universities include Wayne State University, Central Michigan University, Grand Valley State University and Oakland University, each with more than 20,000 students.

Calvin College has about 4,000 students and offers bachelor's and master's degrees at its Grand Rapids location, while University of Detroit Mercy serves around 5,000 students. Several community colleges are available in the state, as are a law school, several seminaries, a tribal college and a few technical institutes.

Economy and Employment

Michigan is best-known for it manufacturing industry, which produces automobiles and auto parts, processed food, military technology, computers and other goods. However, the intense concentration of manufacturing activities in the state has led to a large research and development industry, which is now proportionally the largest in the country.

Per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of March 2016, trade, transportation, and utilities employed about 779,000 jobs. Education and health services employed about 659,000 jobs, while professional and business services had 654,000 jobs.

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