ROCHESTER - Mayo Clinic. IBM. Colleges?

Rochester's main claim to fame has long been Mayo Clinic, but a recent analysis shows the city could be a top draw for college students.

Education service Preply has named Med City the sixth best small college town in the U.S. based on three factors — economic opportunities, cost of living and social environment. The study's authors cite Rochester's public transit, bike share programs and cultural opportunities as part of the city's charm.

Four other cities in Minnesota made Preply's list of the top 200 small college towns: Moorhead, Mankato, Duluth and St. Cloud. Other well-known college towns such as Northfield and St. Peter were left off the list. The study's authors used data from Tripadvisor and Numbeo, a crowd-sourced cost-of-living database.

Preply officials could not be reached for comment.

Rochester's top Minnesota spot on the list may seem odd to locals — younger residents joke the city sleeps by 9 p.m. as there are few places open at night. Yet, the city has gained more postsecondary opportunities in recent years — the University of Minnesota Rochester's burgeoning campus opened in 2007 and Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC) continues to serve thousands of students.

"Rochester is getting to be known as more and more of a vibrant place," said Joe Ward, president of Experience Rochester, the city's tourism bureau.

About 10,000 students attend college or university throughout five schools in the community. A majority of students — over 6,700 last school year — attend RCTC, while the U and Winona State University campuses each boast about 1,000 students.

The U has plans to expand its footprint in the Rochester area over the next few years. University officials this summer struck a deal with the owners of the DoubleTree Hilton in Rochester to convert the hotel into student dorms. The hotel closed over the past week for planned renovations.

Ward said lists and studies like the one Preply compiled are opportunities for communities like Rochester to showcase what makes them unique. For Rochester, that means demonstrating the city is more than just a medical destination.

"I don't think we're going to see it at the top of any best party list any time soon, but I'm glad to see it's one of the best college towns because I think Rochester is really stepping forward to do its part to earn that label," he said.