The University of Illinois is in the twin cities of Champaign and Urbana (total population 180,000) in east-central Illinois, a short drive from Chicago, Indianapolis, and St. Louis. Newsweek has named Champaign-Urbana as one of the top ten tech cities (outside of the Silicon Valley). Champaign-Urbana also ranked tenth as one of the top twenty-five green cities in the United States according to a survey made by Country Home Magazine. The community is large enough to support and attract world-class arts and entertainment yet small enough to offer affordable housing and easy commutes.

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