PRESS RELEASE: State University System Announces 2010 New Florida Initiative's $10 Million In University Awards
Spreadsheet of Awards, Statement of Purpose, Timeline
STATE UNIVERSITY SYSTEM ANNOUNCES
2010 NEW FLORIDA INITIATIVE'S $10 MILLION IN UNIVERSITY AWARDS
Legislative appropriation considered ‘unprecedented investment strategy to utilize the public higher education system for a wholesale transformation of the state’s economic portfolio’
Universities will target professional industry clusters, focusing on three R’s:
regenerate, retain, recruit for Florida’s economic future
TALLAHASSEE – The State University System’s Board of Governors today announced project winners from all 11 public institutions in two award categories that mark the second and final phase of the 2010 funds, selecting high “returns on investment” with a bold new investment strategy designed in partnership with the Legislature that better leverages and captures the collective intellect in the universities. The 11 public institutions were required to pursue unprecedented levels of collaboration toward “cluster industries” and also will be on the hook to retain and recruit teaching scholars in the other category. The entire effort is known as the State University System’s New Florida Initiative.
The two categories announced today – Clustering Grants and Scholars Boost Grants – represent the second and final phase of the 2010 New Florida Initiative awards distribution, which totaled $12 million. Earlier this fall, the R&D commercialization grants ($2 million of the $12 million) were announced by the statutory board that governs that list selection.
The two final lists announced today comprise 31 projects with 45 monetary awards totaling $10 million. All 11 universities applied and were selected for different projects that amplify and accelerate existing programs or create new academic benchmarks. Many of the 31 projects include at least two state universities collaborating, and many projects have three universities working together, “which represents an unprecedented and ground-breaking effort by the entire State University System to leverage some of our best minds and nationally renowned facilities,” said Ava L. Parker, a Jacksonville attorney who is Chair of the Florida Board of Governors, the 17-member governing body of the State University System created in 2002 by voters through a constitutional amendment. “The Board of Governors truly commends this concerted effort across the State University System.”
There were 93 critical needs projects submitted requesting a total of $32.4 million in these final two categories.
Parker noted that the New Florida Initiative, launched nearly a year ago at an event in January in Tampa, already has experienced significant success due to a diligent review process balanced with a sense of urgency. That will continue forward through the oversight and tracking process.
“This day marks the realization of a vision we announced in partnership with the Legislature in January of this year – that we would ensure our State University System both pursues and achieves our obligation to help transform Florida’s economy into one that is sustainable and knowledge-based, featuring high-skill, high-wage jobs,” Parker said. “These projects that now hold the title of being named New Florida Initiative awards will, I predict, not only be historical markers but exponential ‘life forces’ to the long-term sustainability of the state’s economic portfolio. Our universities will regenerate, retain and recruit the ‘best of the best’ for Florida’s economic future.”
State University System Chancellor Frank T. Brogan noted the “promise made to the Legislature at beginning of this process: that we would leverage New Florida Initiative funding to its highest and best use, capturing a diversified yet meaningful set of issues and policy areas to move forward, and produce timely deliverables. This day caps more than four months of exhaustive and thorough review and dialogue with our institutions in the System.
“Judging by the New Florida Initiative’s synergy and the awards today, we will have zero problem upholding our end of the bargain with the Legislature, because the breadth and depth of subject matter covered across the project awards, together with the institutions’ commitment to use these funds to recruit and retain faculty, are without peer in the nation in terms of a state university system’s close partnership with a legislative body,” Brogan continued. “We are the ‘javelin tip’ in the construction and unabated work required in order to execute a wholesale transformation of the state’s economic portfolio with the Florida Legislature.”
Parker also thanked all of the members of the Board of Governors for their support of the New Florida Initiative – especially Patricia Frost of Miami Beach, the 2010 New Florida Initiative lead project review liaison, and Frank Martin of Tallahassee, chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee, where the 2010 overall effort was housed. Frost dedicated 28 years as a career teacher and principal in the Miami-Dade County Public School System and is a former member of the Board of Trustees for Florida International University. Martin is an executive with PBS&J, with 30 years of experience in the operating, maintaining and planning of rail and bus transportations systems.
“The work of my fellow Board members and a small, talented, industrious staff has been remarkable in the New Florida Initiative, and, I hope, the first of many years of partnership with the Legislature to seize high returns on these smart investments,” said Frost.
Parker also noted that the work of the Board of Governors and the 11 state universities is just beginning with the New Florida Initiative.
“Particularly with today’s challenges in Florida, we cannot afford, literally, to squander the power and obligation of our state universities. They are enormously important not only to the regions and communities they serve, but to the state’s future as a whole,” Parker said. “I look forward to continuing the informed dialogue with the legislative leadership and Governor-elect Rick Scott about the future economic benchmarks created and sustained by the New Florida Initiative.”
The 2010 New Florida Initiative Clustering Grants fall into the following areas of health, medicine and engineering:
- Aging Issues in North Florida
- Biomedical Engineering
- Climate Change
- Coastal Watersheds
- Community Health
- Family Medicine
- Geophysical Threats
- Medical Prostheses
- Professional Science Master’s Degree
- Smart Sensors, and
- Vector Borne Diseases.
The 2010 New Florida Initiative Scholars Boost Grants cover the following area of health, medicine and engineering:
- Geology and Geophysics
- Health Science and Marine Science
- Health Services
- Marine Fisheries and Ecosystems
- Mechanical, Ocean and Biomedical Engineering
- Renewable Energy, and
- Veterinary Medicine.
The 2010 New Florida Initiative staff director, Associate Vice Chancellor R.E. Lemon, Ph.D., noted that staff work teams and supervising Board of Governors members utilized a National Institutes of Health model for review and scoring of the grants and awards.
The full list of awards with short descriptions is attached, and posted for the public on Nov. 15 at: www.flbog.edu/new_florida
FACTS ABOUT THE STATE UNIVERSITY SYSTEM OF FLORIDA
• The State University System of Florida has the second-largest headcount enrollment in the nation at 302,957 (the California State University System has more than 431,000). The state with the largest headcount enrollment in public four-year institutions in the fall of 2009 was California (with the California State University System and the University of California combined), at 654,465. Texas was second (540,972 in four university systems), and New York was third (390,415 with two university systems). Florida was fourth – with our 302,957 in the State University System.
—Source: U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, the national central database.
• Overall, the ranking for all graduation rates has Florida in top percentiles, at 10th out of 51 – at 59.9 percent (includes Washington, D.C.’s system). The graduation percentage for black students is 50.9 percent, which translates to Florida’s rank as 5th among 51. The Hispanic student graduation percentage is 57.1 percent, for a ranking of 6th among 51.
The State University System of Florida is one of 24 voluntary participants in the Access to Success Initiative, a project of the National Association of System Heads and The Education Trust. These 24 public higher education systems have pledged to cut the college-going and graduation gaps for low-income and minority students in half by 2015. Each Access to Success participating system sets its own path toward improvement targets yet agrees to a common set of metrics to evaluate and report progress.
—Sources: U.S. Dept. of Education Graduate Rate Survey, 2008. National Graduation (six-year) and retention rates; and The Education Trust, "Big Gaps, Small Gaps: Some Colleges and Universities Outpace Others in Graduating African-American Students" and "Big Gaps, Small Gaps: Some Colleges and Universities Outpace Others in Graduating Hispanic Students."
2010 New Florida Initiative
Media Contacts at the 11 Universities
Florida A&M University, Tallahassee
Name: Sharon Saunders
Title: Chief Communications Officer
Office #: 850-599-3413
Cell #: 850-559-3766
Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton
Name: Kristine Gobbo
Title: Asst. Vice President for Media Relations
Office #: 561-297-1168
Cell #: 561-716-2101
Florida Gulf Coast University, Fort Myers
Name: Ken Schexnayder
Title: Asst. VP, Comm. Relations and Marketing
Florida International University, Miami
Name: Sandra Gonzalez-Levy
Title: Senior Vice President, External Relations
Office #: 305-348-7236
Florida State University, Tallahassee
Name: Browning Brooks
Title: Director of News and Public Affairs
Office #: 850-644-4030
Cell #: 850-933-7962
University of Florida, Gainesville
Name: Steve Orlando
Title: Director, UF News Bureau
Office #: 352-392-0186
Cell #: 352-327-1277
University of Central Florida, Orlando
Name: Zenaida Gonzalez Kotala
Title: Senior Communications Coordinator
Office #: 407-823-6120
Cell #: 407-446-6567
New College, Sarasota
Name: Jake Hartvigsen
Title: Director of Public Affairs
Office #: 941-487-4150
Cell #: 941-650-6043
University of North Florida, Jacksonville
Name: Sharon Ashton
Title: Asst. Vice President of Public Relations
Office #: 904-620-2115
Cell #: 904-704-6762
University of South Florida, Tampa
Name: Vickie Chachere
Title: News Manager
Office #: 813-974.6251
Cell #: 813-787-2990
University of West Florida, Pensacola
Name: Kim Spear Brown
Title: Chief of Staff
Office #: 850-474-2200