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SHSU Hometown
Gets 'Dreamtown' Ranking

If you want to go to college in Texas and live in a "dreamtown," don't bother sending your application for admission to Austin, College Station, San Marcos or Nacogdoches, among others. They don't qualify, for various reasons.

Send it to Kerrville (Schreiner College) or Huntsville (Sam Houston State University).

Kerrville and Huntsville were the only towns (populations between 10,000 and 50,000) in Texas named as "dreamtowns" by an online publication that rated the quality of life in 632 small American cities.

Bizjournals.com Demographics Daily identified the 141 dreamtowns based on their vitality, supply of good jobs, freedom from stress, connection to the cultural mainstream, support for schools, access to health care, low cost of living and small-town character.

The two Texas selections ranked right up there with places like Bend, Ore., Bozeman, Butte, Kalispell and Helena in Montana, Durango, Colo., Key West, Fla., and Hilton Head Island, S. C.

Huntsville Mayor Bill Green, whose full-time job is professor and chairperson of the Sam Houston State University Department of Economics and International Business, said he wasn't surprised.

"Everybody who lives here has known for a long time that we're one of the best places to live," he said. "I'm just surprised that it's taken everyone else such a long time to find out."

Huntsville residents may also (eventually) have another source of pride--they may find themselves in a "micropolitan" area.

Bizjournals.com has also reported that a federal review committee has proposed "micropolitan" as a new demographic category below the level of "metropolitan." The designation would apply, as the dreamtown ratings did, to cities with 10,000 to 50,000 residents. Huntsville's population is estimated to be about 35,000.

The plan to recognize micropolitan areas is being studied by the U. S. Office of Management and Budget, the agency responsible for defining metro areas. It is seeking public comments on the proposal until Oct. 6.

Bizjournals.com also reported that if the new designation is accepted, an official list of micropolitan areas isn't expected before 2003.

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SHSU Media Contact: Frank Krystyniak
September 20, 2000
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