Home Culture Business & Education ‘Coldest Winters’ List Leaves Alaska Out in the Cold

‘Coldest Winters’ List Leaves Alaska Out in the Cold


The Huffington Post published an article detailing the 21 coldest colleges in the country. Not a single campus from Alaska was on it.

Coming in at the #1 spot was Minnesota State University – Moorhead. The list was compiled from College Prowler, a college review and ranking site. There are currently 503 schools on the sites sub-list of “coldest winters.” The ranking system relies heavily on student reviews and available meteorological data.

Since this is the 21st century and weather data is available for every corner of the globe, it realistically boils down to user reviews. If your school doesn’t have enough reviews, you don’t get listed.

In fact, Alaska isn’t on the sites “coldest winters” list at all. This gives the list a slightly comical undertone, with colleges in California, Arizona, Georgia and Texas ranking higher – and therefore colder – on the list than Alaska. Even Puerto Rico – at spot #503 – is technically colder than Alaska due to the Last Frontier’s absence from the list.

Who should be #1 on the list?

Several colleges in Alaska merit mention on a “coldest winters” list. The University of Alaska Fairbanks earned a nod from the Anchorage Press, which mentioned it being home of the Cold Climate Housing Research Center.

The obvious choice, based on the meteorological data available, would have to be Iḷisaġvik College in Barrow. Barrow – that northernmost settlement in the United States – has an average temperature that is 30.9 degrees colder than Moorhead. A common January sees Moorhead enjoy a balmy 6F, while Barrow endures a brisk -12F.

While Ilisagvik College is noted for being the northernmost accredited community college in the country, it now also has the right to be labeled the coldest.

Ilisagvik College. Photo by David Cohoe, via wikipedia.org
Ilisagvik College. Photo by David Cohoe, via wikipedia.org