Indiana i/ɪndiˈænə/ is a US state, admitted to the United States as the 19th on December 11, 1816. It is located in the Midwestern United States and Great Lakes Region. With 6,483,802 residents, the state is ranked 15th in population and 16th in population density. Indiana is ranked 38th in land area and is the smallest state in the continental US west of the Appalachian Mountains. Its capital and largest city is Indianapolis, the second largest of any state capital and largest state capital east of the Mississippi River.
Before it became a territory, varying cultures of indigenous peoples and historic Native Americans inhabited Indiana for thousands of years. Angel Mounds State Historic Site, one of the best preserved ancient earthwork mound sites in the United States, can be found in Southwestern Indiana near Evansville.
Residents of Indiana are known as Hoosiers. The derivation of the term is disputed, but one hypothesis has "Hoosier" originating from a frontier greeting, a corruption of "Who's here?" The state's name means "Land of the Indians," or simply "Indian Land." This name dates back to at least the 1760s but was first applied to the region by the United States Congress when the Indiana Territory was incorporated in 1800, separating it from the Northwest Territory.
Today, Indiana has a diverse economy with a gross state product of $214 billion in 2005. Indiana has several metropolitan areas with populations greater than 100,000 and a number of smaller industrial cities and towns. Indiana is home to several major sports teams and athletic events including the NFL's Indianapolis Colts, the NBA's Indiana Pacers, the WNBA’s Indiana Fever, and the Indianapolis 500 and Brickyard 400 motorsports races. The state also has several NCAA Division I athletic programs, notably the Purdue Boilermakers, Indiana Hoosiers, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and Butler Bulldogs.
Furthermore, the state has several universities ranked among the best in U.S. News & World Report's 2011 rankings. Purdue University, Indiana University, and the University of Notre Dame are ranked among the top 50 in the National Universities Rankings, while Butler University, Valparaiso University and the University of Evansville are ranked among the top 10 in the Regional University Midwest Rankings. Taylor University has been ranked first in the guide's America’s Best Colleges among 109 Midwest Regional Colleges for five years in a row. Additionally, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology has been rated the best undergraduate engineering program by the magazine since the year 2000.