Missoula, MT (population: 70,460) has four acupuncture schools within a 500-mile radius of its city center. Bastyr University, the highest ranked school in this group with an acupuncture program, has a total student population of 917. It is the 5935th highest ranked school in the USA and the 105th highest in the state of Washington (#1 is University of Washington-Seattle Campus).
Acupuncture students from Missoula schools who go on to become acupuncturists, massage therapists, alternative medicinal caregivers, etc. have a good chance at finding employment. For example, there are 174,490 people working as physical therapists alone in the US, and their average annual salary is $76,220. Also, Health diagnosing and treating practitioners make on average $77,630 per year and there are about 32,960 of them employed in the US today.
Missoula lies in Missoula county, which is one of the 36 counties in Montana. Overall, the Missoula area has 55,570 total employed workers according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a 2.1% unemployment rate, $17.12/hr average worker wage, and a $35,610 average annual salary.
After taking into account tuition, living expenses, and financial aid, Bastyr University comes out as the most expensive ($/yr) for acupuncture students, with Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine as the lowest, reported at only $/yr.