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FAU to receive $5.7 million for new professors, graduate research

The state funding will be split among Florida’s 12 public institutions with the goal of increase graduation and employment rates.

Gov.+Rick+Scott.+Photo+courtesy+of+Gage+Skidmore+on+Flickr.
Gov. Rick Scott. Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore on Flickr.

Gov. Rick Scott. Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore on Flickr.

Gov. Rick Scott. Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore on Flickr.

Rachel Gavilan, Contributing Writer

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Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill last month approving a $151 million increase in state school funding.

The subsidies will be split between the 12 public universities in Florida for the upcoming academic school year. FAU will receive $5.7 million of that package, according to the News Service of Florida.  

FAU received funding for world class faculty and graduate degree excellence for the current fiscal year, [fiscal year] 2017-18, and for the upcoming year, [fiscal year] 2018-19,” said James Capp, assistant provost for academic operations and planning at FAU.

The funds will be put towards hiring the most experienced professors, improving graduate programs, recruiting students, and updating research facility equipment.  

The bill, legislation SB-4 “Florida Excellence in Higher Education Act 2018”, establishes two new programs: the World Class Faculty and Scholar Program and the State University Professional and Graduate Degree Excellence Program.  

The World Class Faculty and Scholar Program focuses on recruiting top professors and researchers from around the globe. The State University Professional and Graduate Degree Excellence Program targets the improvement of medical, law, and business schools.  

“The Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine and the College of Business are using the Graduate Degree Excellence funds to enhance research infrastructure for graduate students, to provide merit based scholarships, to hire strategic faculty to mentor graduate students, and also to enhance our graduate and professional degree programs,” Capp said. “The World Class Faculty initiative will provide colleges with resources to enhance the recruitment and retention of top professors and researchers.”

Florida Senate President Joe Negron said he believes the initiatives will eventually increase graduation and employment rates.

“I believe Florida taxpayers will see a return worthy of their investment as more Florida students attend our own universities, complete degree programs on-time and then graduate with job opportunities in high-demand fields needed in our growing communities” said Negron.  

The funding allocated for each school was determined by the 2025 strategic plan, “The Race to Excellence,” according to Capp.  

Capp says FAU’s provost, vice president of academic affairs, and deans will be responsible for overseeing its use.

List of Florida state schools and the funding the are expected to receive:

  1. University of Florida $16.8 million
  2. Florida State University $15 million
  3. University of Central Florida $14.6 million
  4. University of South Florida $13.4 million
  5. Florida International University $9.3 million
  6. Florida Atlantic University $5.7 million
  7. University of North Florida $4.1 million
  8. Florida Gulf Coast University $3.2 million
  9. New College of Florida $2.7 million
  10. Florida A&M University $2.6 million
  11. University of West Florida $2.6 million
  12. Florida Polytechnic University $860,000

Each school is required to submit an annual report on the implementation of the funding.

Rachel Gavilan is a contributing writer with the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected].

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