Skip to main content Skip to main content
Collage of MSU Denver classes and students

Metropolitan State University of Denver has transformed the lives of more than 90,000 people in Denver and Colorado through affordable degree programs, innovative public-private partnerships and a commitment to diversity.

That’s why MSU Denver now stands not only as a preeminent public urban university but also a bastion of the American dream.

MSU Denver: The Model Urban University

Image of Janine Davidson, President of MSU DenverAt Metropolitan State University of Denver, we believe that every student should have an opportunity to better their life. And we know that higher education is the key factor in upward economic and social mobility. That’s why we offer the highest-quality education at the lowest tuition rate in Colorado.

Our students come from every background and experience. We have veterans looking to re-establish themselves in the workforce, first-generation college students trying to do a little better than their parents and plenty of people who want to change directions in their careers. They may have taken a zigzagging path to get to college, but they find their way here and leave as Roadrunners.

We graduate Fulbright scholars, award-winning novelists, noted academics, pioneering scientists and many others who are at the very top of their fields. And that’s further proof of why we need to give every student a fair shot, why we don’t define ourselves by who we exclude, but by who we include. Because every student has the potential to be something or someone greater, to move up the social and economic ladder; in short, to achieve the American dream.

We hope you’ll join us as we work to become the model urban university for opportunity, diversity, excellence and transformation.



Dr Davidson Signature

Janine Davidson, Ph.D.

Metropolitan State University of Denver

The Roadrunner Difference

In the early days of the University, students dubbed themselves “Roadrunners” because they sprinted across downtown Denver’s busy streets to get to classes. In 1974, students named the Roadrunner the University’s mascot. But over the years, the MSU Denver Roadrunner has come to signify more, including the fighting spirit shared by every graduate of the University.

Roadrunners are:

They come from every background imaginable and learn to be broad-minded by grappling with a variety of experiences and viewpoints. 

They are determined to succeed and achieve. If they get knocked down, they get back up.


They have job-ready skills and a deep knowledge of the issues and dynamics that shape the workforce.

They want to use their education to make change. Every degree earned has a ripple effect, spreading benefits across the metro area and beyond.

They don’t settle for walking on well-worn trails – they run their own road.


MSU Denver offers the lowest cost (tuition and fees) among the state’s largest colleges:

Metropolitan State University of Denver


University of Northern Colorado $9,918
University of Colorado Denver $11,438
Colorado State University $11,832
University of Colorado Boulder $12,534

Resident undergraduate tuition and fees for 30 credit hours/full-time student (full academic year).

Figures are obtained from respective university websites.

The Road To Success

MSU Denver helps students on the road to success.

Small Classes

Average Class Size: 21 Students


Low Student/Faculty Ratio

18 to 1



85+ Majors / 70+ Minors


7 Master's Degrees

Business Administration, Professional Accountancy, Health Administration, Social Work, Arts in Teaching, Cybersecurity (Fall 2019) and Human Nutrition and Dietetics (Fall 2019).



732/1,300+ Businesses and Organizations

Providing more than 1,300 internships for MSU Denver students.


Trophy icon 

Third Highest Ranking of Median Starting Salary

With Colorado's other public universities, MSU Denver graduates have the third-highest median starting salary within their first year of graduating.*

*Colorado Department of Higher Education 2015 College Measures

Fall 2018 Student Demographics

20,011 Total Degree-Seeking Undergraduate and Graduate Student Enrollment Headcount

As one of the leaders in diverse undergraduate enrollment among Colorado’s four-year universities, with 8,617 students of color, MSU Denver’s students mirror the faces of Colorado, embodying a wide array of backgrounds and cultures. The campus environment provides students the opportunity to develop multicultural awareness critical to thriving in today’s workplace while embracing each student’s individuality.

Student Diversity 2018

Fall 2018 Undergraduate Student Diversity

Located in the heart of urban Denver, MSU Denver:

  Is ranked one of the top Colorado colleges for student veterans, with 992 student veterans.
•  Has an average student age of 25.

  Has the highest number of ASSET* students, 357.

*Undocumented Colorado high school graduates can attend a state public university or college at the in-state tuition rate if they meet certain requirements, per the ASSET Senate Bill, 13-033.

Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) Accreditation logo

AACSB Accredited

Only 5 percent of business schools worldwide earn this distinction.
Best For Vets 2018

Best for Vets: Colleges

Military Times ranked MSU Denver one of the top Colorado colleges for veterans and 67th in the U.S. because of our Yellow Ribbon Certified campus and programs.
Higher Learning Commission logo

Higher Learning Commission Accreditation

MSU Denver is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, a regional accreditation agency that covers 19 states in the north-central region of the United States.
Diversity Champion

Diversity Champion Award

MSU Denver is proud of its designation as a 2018 Diversity Champion by insight into diversity.

Community Engagement

MSU Denver’s commitment to the metropolitan Denver community is evidenced by our off-campus exhibition space, public-private partnerships and a wide array of workforce-ready internships. These opportunities build academic and professional qualifications while offering industries trained workers with up-to-the-minute skills. 

Image of Center for Visual Art (CVA)

Center for Visual Art (CVA)

The Center for Visual Art (CVA), located in the Art District on Santa Fe, is the off-campus exhibition space of Metropolitan State University of Denver. In addition to showing significant contemporary art from around the globe, the award-winning CVA is a division of the MSU Denver Department of Art which is dedicated to providing an unparalleled urban learning environment and a strong sense of community within the local art scene.

Image of the Tivoli Brewery

Tivoli Brewing Company and Beer Operations Program

The Tivoli Brewery and Tap House, a $7 million operation, opened in August 2015. The first full-production brewery on a college campus is an extension of the Tivoli Distributing Company, founded in 2012 by native Coloradans. Students in the program work with and learn from professionals in all aspects of the craft beer business, including restaurant management, distribution, sales, marketing, packaging, quality control and business operations.

Image of the Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center and Springhill Suites Downtown Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center and Springhill Suites Downtown 

The Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center (HLC) is a distinct combination of a higher education classroom building, a teaching laboratory, a commercial hotel — SpringHill Suites by Marriott —  and a conference space. Students from MSU Denver along with full-time professionals with Sage Hospitality serving as mentors work together to provide a truly unique learning environment and a successful revenue-generating venture for the University.

Image of Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME) Students

Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME)

The Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME) and MSU Denver through DIME Denver offers accredited bachelor’s degrees in commercial music performance, commercial songwriting and music industry studies. This exclusive educational partnership is grounded in both music and liberal arts studies, allowing aspiring musicians to pursue careers in music while simultaneously working towards their bachelor degrees. MSU Denver is a full member in good standing of National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).

Image of the Advanced Manufacturing Sciences InstituteAerospace and Engineering Sciences

Aerospace and Engineering Sciences brings together civil, electrical and mechanical engineering technology, computer information systems and computer sciences in a new $60 million facility opened in June 2017. It includes Colorado’s only Advanced Manufacturing Sciences Institute. Funding came from the state Capital Development Fund, University construction dollars and private donations. The new building will house York Space Systems, Hartwig, Inc. and EyesSat LLC, all of which will collaborate with faculty and students.


Founded: 1963
Opened Doors: 1965
Main Campus: 890 Auraria Parkway, Denver, CO 80204
President: Janine Davidson, Ph.D.
Athletics: NCAA Division II, Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference
Mascot: Rowdy the Roadrunner