State University System of Florida – Part 1

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Florida State University is just one of twelve public universities in the State of Florida (photo courtesy of J-a-x on flickr).

There are currently twelve different public universities in the State of Florida, located in all corners of the state’s borders. In addition, most of these universities have multiple campuses throughout the state, some catering to specific program, while others provide a smaller setting for learning in a more-convenient location. Nonetheless, each institution offers unique programs, students, and student organizations.

Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University

Location: Tallahassee

Fun Fact: FAMU is not only the number one producer of black pharmacists in the nation, but also the top producer of African-American educators in the nation.

Founded in 1887, FAMU is the largest historically black university in the United States. Over 13,000 students are enrolled in more than 100 degree programs; the university also has multiple organizations, fraternities, sororities, and athletic opportunities open to active students.

Florida Atlantic University

Location: Boca Raton 

Fun Fact: FAU serves seven different counties that span more than 100 miles in southwest Florida

FAU has awarded over 110,000 degrees since opening its classrooms in 1964. As the first public university in southeast Florida, the school originally only offered upper-division coursework. Now, with over 29,000 students, FAU has expanded its degree programs, opened satellite campuses in Dania Beach, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Jupiter, Port St. Lucie, and Fort Pierce, and registered over 300 student organizations on campus.

Florida Gulf Coast University

Location: Fort Myers 

Fun Fact: Florida Gulf Coast University offers a concentration in death Investigation which prepares students to work in the field as a medico-legal death investigator for a Medical Examiner’s office.

In 1997 FGCU began offering its first classes to students as a newly formed university in the Florida State System; previously the campus was a satellite branch of USF. Now, nearly twenty years later, the University enrolls over 12,000 students in 86 different degree programs. In addition, FGCU also offers programs 100% online.

Florida International University

Location: Miami

Fun Fact: FIU became the youngest university in the nation to be awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the country’s oldest and most distinguished academic honor society, in 2000.

FIU is the largest university in South Florida, the second largest in Florida, and the seventh largest in the United States. In 2012, the total enrollment was over 50,000 students in more than 280 majors. In addition, the university’s acceptance rate is typically around 40%, it was ranked in the top sixteen schools in the nation with the toughest grading systems, and alumni are among the least indebted students in the nation.

Florida Polytechnic University

Location: Lakeland

Fun Fact: Florida Polytechnic University used to be USF Polytechnic and expects to open in August 2015 with 500 students. Anticipated program offerings will be in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Florida State University

Location: Tallahassee

Fun Fact: FSU is home to the Flying High Circus, a student-run circus that stages shows every spring under its own Big Top.

FSU was established in 1851 and currently offers over 300 programs of study through 15 different colleges. The College of Arts and Sciences is the oldest college at FSU (1901) and the College of Medicine is the newest (2000). In addition to the main campus, FSU has a satellite campus in Panama City, the Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training in Sarasota, and a Coastal and Marine Laboratory in St. Teresa.

Ashley Benson is a distance education professional with five years of experience in the for-profit sector. She has worked coast-to-coast within the United States as an academic advisor, an adjunct teaching assistant and, most recently, a campus Registrar. Through formal education and industry experience, Ashley practices staying informed on the current events and changes within higher education and the students involved.

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