San Francisco is a center for top-notch education

When people search for academic hubs, they traditionally think of eastern cities like Boston that are home to many colleges and universities. However, houses for sale in the Bay Area are quite close to some of the premier liberal arts institutions in the United States. Along with famous names like Stanford, UC Berkley and the University of San Francisco, there are a number of top-notch schools within and around the city. If you are considering relocating to San Francisco to pursue a higher education, take a look at some of the following schools.

San Francisco State University
This institution is located just to the south of the Sunset District in western San Francisco, and the campus is centered at 1600 Holloway Avenue. The school is well known for its acting and entertainment programs, and the faculty here have taught some of the most famous screenwriters and actors in the world.

For example, famous acting alumni include Academy Award winner Annette Bening, comedian Danny Glover and the late kung-fu extraordinaire David Carradine. Another Academy Award winner who attended the university is Steven Zaillian, who wrote the screenplay for Schindler's List, Gangs of New York and Moneyball.

Along with acting and entertainment, San Francisco State University also offers degree programs in fields such as industrial art, history, journalism, political science and much more.

UC San Francisco
The University of California, San Francisco is more famous for its medical programs and graduate studies than for acting and entertainment. While the school offers hundreds of different degrees, a large portion of students focus on subject areas like nursing, pharmacy and dentistry. In-house faculty here conduct their own medical research, and internal discoveries have led to distinction amongst the international medical community.

John Michael Bishop is one of the most prestigious alumni. The microbiologist and immunologist shared the 1989 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, and is currently an active faculty member at UCSF. Three other Nobel Prize-winners are also on the university's payroll, including Stanley Prusiner, Harold Varmus and most recent winner Elizabeth Blackburn.

If you are looking for a career in medicine, this is the clear front-runner for academic institutions in the greater San Francisco area.

San Francisco Art Institute
The San Francisco Art Institute is a hidden gem in the Bay Area. Since it is not as notorious as the prior two universities, students here fly under the radar while still receiving a top education. Photography and music are two of the most popular subjects to study at the institute. The school is not without some famous alumni as well. Renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz plied her trade here, along with other celebrities like director Spike Jonze and Grateful Dead musician Jerry Garcia.