Colleges, Universities & Online Colleges in New Orleans

April 27, 2021 • 3 Min Read

Despite a population of roughly 370,000, New Orleans contains at least 15 colleges of varying sizes and specialties, with nearly 52,000 total students when combining full-time and part-time attendees. With nearly 33 percent of New Orleans adults over the age of 25 holding at least a bachelor’s degree or higher, the city’s share of educated residents outperforms the national average. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Colleges in New Orleans

New Orleans has a strong representation of public colleges, with a majority of the city’s full- and part-time students attending a publicly funded institution. Delgado Community College — with a student body over 13,000 — and the University of New Orleans, with 11,000 enrollees, together account for nearly half of all the college students in the city.

Delgado Community College is, by far, the largest associate-degree granting college in the city. Its huge numbers empower DCC to offer unique programs and features to support its students, including on-campus daycare and job placement services. Some of its most popular academic programs include registered nursing, accounting technology, criminal justice, radiography and law enforcement.

The University of New Orleans is the city’s largest public baccalaureate institution offering undergraduate and graduate degrees, including doctoral programs. Like Delgado Community College, UNO serves students through on-campus daycare facilities and placement assistance in addition to weekend classes, a particularly accommodating feature.

Tulane University is regarded as New Orleans’ most academically competitive university with over 12,000 students enrolling in its associate, bachelor's through graduate degree and professional programs. Some of the most common majors include pre-professional pathways such as law, finance, medicine and architecture.

Here is a glance at some of the colleges that call New Orleans home.

Tulane University12,845Private
Loyola University New Orleans5,008Private
Dillard University1,249Private
Xavier University of Louisiana3,399Private
University of New Orleans10,903Public
Southern University at New Orleans3,245Public
Delgado Community College20,436Public
Louisiana State University – Health Sciences Center – New Orleans2,777Public

Online Colleges in New Orleans

Nearly all of the New Orleans-based colleges offer distance and online learning programs and courses, regardless of degree type. Delgado Community College, University of New Orleans, Tulane University, Southern University at New Orleans, Our Lady of Holy Cross College and Loyola University New Orleans are just a sample of the colleges providing individual courses or online degree programs. Loyola University New Orleans features online graduate studies such as master's programs in nursing or criminal justice administration.

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Top Industries, Careers & Employers in New Orleans

New Orleans takes full economic advantage of its natural resources and location by the Gulf of Mexico, which have allowed the city to establish itself as a site for oil and gas refineries as well as the shipping industry. Louisiana possesses roughly 10 percent of the United States' known oil reserves and holds the distinction of being the country’s third largest producer of petroleum and third leading refiner, producing 15 billion gallons of gas annually. New Orleans’ location, with respect to Louisiana’s oil and gas shipping and refining operations, helps attract major global oil and gas companies, including ExxonMobil, Chevron and Shell, to name a few.

The shipping industry has a strong presence in the city, thanks to the Port of New Orleans — the fifth largest port in the U.S. — and the Port of South Louisiana. Together, the two ports create a major commercial gateway and transportation hub. Many shipping, shipbuilding, logistics and freight forwarding companies have a significant portion of their business tied to the city’s ports. Some of these companies include M.G. Maher & Company, The Kearney Companies and Coastal Cargo Company. New Orleans’s largest industrial employer is Avondale Shipyards, a prominent shipbuilder.

Tourism remains one of the largest drivers of the city’s economy. With the Mardi Gras Festival, the World Cultural Economic Forum and many cultural and arts events dotting the city’s calendar, New Orleans is a regular destination at designated dates throughout the year. New Orleans can rely on a steady influx of tourists to fuel its hospitality and culinary industry. With over 10 million annual visitors supporting the city’s 85,000 jobs in the hospitality business, tourism continues to generate a major portion of the city’s tax revenue, not to mention potential employment opportunities for its college students and graduates.

Health care, aerospace and defense are additional major industries in the local economic landscape. Martin Marietta, a branch of the aerospace and defense giant Lockheed Martin, holds a large base of operations in the city, employing a staff of 2,500 in New Orleans alone. Health services companies include Ochsner Health System, Touro Infirmary, GE Healthcare and Humana. New Orleans’ graduating students can seek careers in a range of industries such as health care and engineering, which generally require higher education for prospective professionals.

Colleges & Universities in New Orleans


Tulane University of Louisiana14,037$39,850Not For Profit (Private)
University of New Orleans13,832$4,644Public
Loyola University-New Orleans5,545$32,266Not For Profit (Private)
Southern University at New Orleans3,977$2,676Public
Xavier University of Louisiana3,725$16,900Not For Profit (Private)
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center-New Orleans3,051$3,359Public
New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary2,996$5,486Not For Profit (Private)
Our Lady of Holy Cross College1,609$8,160Not For Profit (Private)
Dillard University1,383$13,650Not For Profit (Private)


Delgado Community College26,924$2,640Public

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