Director of Communications
PRESS RELEASE: Education enhancement bill is good news for the State University System
State University System applauds Gov. Rick Scott's signing of the Career and Professional Education Act
TALLAHASSEE—In a move that will provide a major boost to education in Florida, Gov. Rick Scott today signed the Career and Professional Education Act, which passed with broad support in both the House and Senate this legislative session. This wide-reaching bill, SB 1076, signals the state’s commitment to moving Florida's universities toward national prominence and gaining a competitive edge in the rapidly growing world of online education.
Among reforms for all educational sectors, the bill includes several important enhancements for the State University System:
- The bill identifies metrics for designating a state research university as "preeminent." Institutions that meet the standards (currently the University of Florida and Florida State University) will receive additional resources and flexibilities with the goal of providing even higher quality higher education and improving national rankings. These metrics dovetail with the Board of Governors' annual work plan process—representing another example of the system's commitment to accountability.
- The research university that meets all of the preeminence metrics (UF) will receive funding to develop an institute of fully online baccalaureate degree programs at a lower cost for Florida residents than that of traditional universities. Meanwhile, the entire State University System will work together to better coordinate all the system's existing offerings in the most efficient way.
- The other preeminent university (FSU) will receive funding to recruit National Academy Members, establish a master’s degree in cloud virtualization, and institute an entrepreneurs-in-residence program on its campus.
- The Board of Governors will recommend a performance-funding methodology to help make Florida's universities more accountable as the prepare students for careers. This is a process that the board has been working on for the past year and will continue to refine.
- Additionally, the bill provides for a degree completion program that is designed to help students who have “stopped out” (not “dropped out”) find a path to degree completion.
"We are gratified that the Governor and the Legislature share our dedication to making the State University System of Florida the most efficient, high-quality and accountable university system in the country," said Chancellor Frank T. Brogan. "I firmly believe that a rising tide lifts all boats. The higher education enhancements included in this landmark legislation will not only benefit our universities and our students, but will provide a good return on investment for all the people of Florida."
“Our goal for many years has been to become a top 10 university in the fullest sense of the term, and this bill finally sets in place some of the key pieces we need to head down that road,” said UF President Bernie Machen. “Thanks to the vision of House Speaker Will Weatherford, it also awards UF the state online degree institute and puts us at the forefront of online learning. We thank the Legislature and Gov. Scott for their support and confidence in the University of Florida.”
"We are extremely grateful that the Governor and Florida Legislature have embraced this important measure, which sets high standards of excellence and then rewards the universities that meet these standards, said FSU President Eric Barron. "Florida State University is committed to providing a cutting-edge education to the residents of Florida while ensuring that our graduates have highly successful careers. This measure will most certainly assist us in these areas."
Facts about the State University System of Florida and the Board of Governors
The State University System of Florida is a constitutional body led by the 17-member Board of Governors. The system has 12 universities and more than 330,000 students, making it the second-largest public university system in the nation. Responsibilities include defining the distinctive mission of each institution and managing the system’s coordination and operation. The board appoints a Chancellor who serves as the system’s chief executive. For more, visit www.flbog.edu.
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