2021 Updates from FSU, UCF, UF, USF, and Other Florida Public Universities

For the last five years, U.S. News and World Report has ranked Florida’s higher education system #1 in the country. The State University System (SUS) of Florida includes 12 member institutions: UF, FSU, USF, UCF, FAU, FGCU, FIU, FAMU, UNF, Florida Poly, New College of Florida, and UWF. Last Wednesday, the college advisors at International College Counselors attended a virtual, invitation-only admissions workshop for the Florida SUS and heard from officials at all 12 of the Florida public institutions.

Below are some workshop highlights. And for more information about the Florida public universities, join us on September 8 at 7 pm EST for a free webinar.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: 4.25
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1250-1370; Summer 1170-1280; ACT: Fall 26-30; Summer 23-28
UCF received more than 49,000 applications last year and admitted 7,131 students. In the class of 2025, UCF welcomed one of the school’s most academically talented cohorts, including 107 National Merit Scholars and 30 National Hispanic Scholars. Students come from all 50 states, and approximately 48% of the study body identifies as a minority. New majors this year include a BS in Data Science and BS in Career and Technical Education. The school’s Top 10 Knight program continues to provide guaranteed admission to the top 10% of Florida’s graduating classes. UCF has rolling admissions and will start reviewing applications this month.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: 4.4-4.6
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1350-1480; Summer 1260-1420; ACT: Fall 30-34; Summer 29-32
UF is ranked #6 among public universities by U.S. News and World Report. The school offers over 120 undergrad majors. Last year, UF received 53,000 applications and admitted 15,000 students to either the Summer B or Fall session. Six hundred students were admitted through UF’s Innovation Academy, a spring/summer program that embeds an innovation minor in 25 majors. Another 3,600 students were admitted through UF’s PaCE program, a hybrid program where students start classes online and then finish their degree on campus. Academic performance over four years – including rigor and courses taken within the student’s high school – remains the most important factor in admissions. In one new initiative, UF students from any major can now pursue a Certificate in AI Fundamentals and Applications. UF recently opened the Lavender Living Learning Community in the Springs Complex, a gender-inclusive housing option for LGBTQ+ students. This year, UF added an essay on their application asking students about a meaningful activity. Admissions representatives noted that they like a good story that provides insight into the student and how the student will contribute on campus. Students applying to the Honors Program must write two additional essays. Admissions representatives reiterated that the essays should be specific to the UF Honors Program, and students should not deviate from the topic. Other points of note: UF does not consider legacy in its admissions, does not admit by major, and does not consider AP scores in the admissions process.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: 3.0
Standardized Tests (NOTE: instead of a composite score, FAMU considers subscores as follows):  – SAT 26 Math, 27 Reading, 27 Language; ACT: Math 22; 22 Reading, 19 English
FAMU is one of the largest historically black colleges in the U.S., providing high-quality education at affordable prices.  To be considered for admission, students must report their high school courses and grades via the Student Self-Reported Academic Record (SSAR), provide two letters of recommendation, and submit an essay of at least 500 words on the topic of one’s choice. According to an admissions representative, overcoming an obstacle or adversity is a good essay topic. Students should apply by November 1, which is the Priority Deadline for full merit scholarship consideration. The school offers 50+ degrees in a wide range of academic programs, including pharmacy, nursing, journalism, health sciences, engineering, architecture, and business.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen
GPA: Fall: 3.73-4.33; Summer: 3.23-3.81; Wilkes Honors College: 4.1-4.7
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1100-1270; Summer: 1000-1120; ACT: Fall: 23-29; Summer 19-24
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the founding of FAU. The school has two campuses: Boca Raton (main campus) and Jupiter (Wilkes Honors College). FAU prides itself on the diversity of its student body. The school offers an engineering bridge program, an academic success program, and the only university-affiliated, free-standing honors college in the U.S. FAU recently received the largest gift in the school’s history, $20 million from benefactors Kurt and Marilyn Wallach. The gift will fund the Kurt and Marilyn Wallach Institute for Holocaust and Jewish Studies. FAU received 6,000 applications last year for its prestigious medical school and admitted just 66. New this year is a 150-bed residence hall on the school’s Jupiter campus. The school has rolling admissions, but for merit aid consideration, students should apply by January 14. Applicants should use the SSAR to report their high school courses and grades.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: Fall 3.56-4.33; Summer 3.44-4.23
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1090-1230; Summer 1050-1180; ACT: Fall 22-27; Summer 19-25
This fall, FGCU welcomed the largest freshman class in its history. Founded in 1991, FGCU is home to 15,000+ students– 4,700 of whom live on campus. The campus sits on 800 acres, 400 of which are restored or preserved land. This year, the school remodeled the Student Services Plaza and opened three new projects: a Recreation and Wellness Center, a Community Counseling Center, and Lucas Hall, home to the School of Entrepreneurship. Construction is underway for a new 116,000 sq. ft. building for the Water School, which will help students explore water-based issues, including climate change, national resources, and ecosystem health. FGCU’s golf management program is one of only 18 PGA-accredited programs in the country, and the only one in Florida. They also have a strong internship program and are ranked #2 in the state with job placement for its students. New majors include Construction Management in the College of Engineering, as well as Supply Chain Management and Analytics and Informatics, both in the College of Business, and Digital Media and Design in the College of Arts and Sciences. FGCU housing includes three resort-style options.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen
GPA: Fall: 4.2-4.6; Summer 3.7-4.3
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1200-1350; Summer 1040-1160; ACT: Fall 25-30; Summer 20-25
In Florida, state universities are evaluated on key metrics, including retention rate, four-year graduation rate, and cost of attendance. Based in Miami, FIU earned the highest score and has been named the #1 public school in Florida. FIU prides itself on the Aquarius Reef Base, the world’s only underwater research facility, where students can study global environmental threats, marine ecosystems, and much more. Bacardi recently donated $5 million to the school to establish a curriculum in beverage management. FIU has an extremely diverse student body, with students coming from 381 high schools, 66 countries, and 86% of students identifying as Black, African American, or Hispanic. The school also holds the distinction of awarding the most bachelor’s and master’s degrees to Hispanic students. Opening in 2022 will be a new dorm with 750 beds and a new building for the Green School of International and Public Affairs. FIU offers Top 10% Access: students who graduate from a Florida high school in the top 10% of their class will receive an admissions pathway. The student must take a standardized test, but will gain admission to one pathway regardless of their score. Students are encouraged to register for free on Raise.Me to earn micro-scholarships.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA – Fall 4.1-4.6; Summer 3.6-4.4
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1250-1400; Summer 1130-1200; ACT: Fall 27-31; Summer 23-26
Florida Poly is the newest school to join the SUS of Florida and focuses solely on STEM education. Florida Poly was ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the Top 40 public engineering programs without a doctoral degree, and Affordable Schools ranked the school #2 in the nation for delivering a quality, affordable education in mechanical engineering. Florida Poly welcomed its largest freshman class for this fall, and now includes a total enrollment of 1,550. A new major this year is Cybersecurity Engineering, and Florida Poly collaborated with the U.S. Navy to prepare students for access to the Navy’s prestigious Nuclear Propulsion Officer Candidate Program (NUPOC). The school added new club sports, including men’s lacrosse, women’s soccer, and archery. The Florida Poly Robotics team continues to grow and excel at the highest levels of competition in VEX and Combat. A new 90,000 sq. ft. Applied Research Center is under construction with plans to open in the spring. The Center will include new teaching labs, design spaces, conference rooms, and faculty offices.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen
GPA: Fall 4.2-4.6; Summer 3.8-4.3
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1250-1400; Summer 1190-1300; ACT: Fall 28-32; Summer 25-29
Last month, FSU welcomed its 16th president in the school’s history, Dr. Richard McCullough, who brings more than 30 years of academic research and leadership experience to the position. FSU received more than 66,000 applications for fall 2021 and welcomed its largest freshman class in school history. The admitted class included students from 66 of 67 Florida counties, all 50 states, Washington D.C., and 49 countries. FSU’s four-year graduation rate of 74% makes it #1 in the state of Florida; they also have a 95% retention rate of students returning as sophomores. The school also ranks as the #11 Best Value College for 2021 among public colleges, according to Princeton Review. Top majors for incoming freshmen included biological sciences, business, engineering, psychology, and exploratory/undeclared. The school offers 276 academic and professional degrees. Students wanting to be considered for the Honors Program must express interest in applying to the Honors Program on their application, and then must complete a separate Honors Program application. FSU’s application deadline is November 1, and all materials must be in by that date, but students have until December 31 to submit any additional standardized test scores.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen
GPA: 3.55-4.22
Standardized Tests: SAT 1190-1365; ACT 25-30
New College of Florida is the state’s designated honors college. Only 700 students are enrolled; as a result, students receive a personalized liberal arts education at a Florida public school price. New College, with 40 majors and a number of interdisciplinary concentrations, prepares intellectually curious students for lives of great achievement. Each student creates their own curriculum tailored to the student’s interests and goals. The academic contract is the core of the New College academic program, and students complete seven contracts prior to graduation. These contracts are in lieu of credit hours and may include internships, independent reading projects, or study abroad. Hands-on learning is encouraged and expected; 93% of students had a least three hands-on learning experiences.  Students do not receive letter grades; rather, they receive narrative evaluations on their transcripts, allowing them to concentrate on mastering content. Every student receives a dedicated career coach who starts working with them during their first semester on campus. The school offers 80 clubs and organizations.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: Fall 4.0-4.5; Summer 3.3-4.0
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1230-1370; Summer 1090-1170; ACT: Fall 22-28; Summer 20-25
Located in Jacksonville, UNF sits on a 1,000-acre campus. The school enrolls 17,000 students, and the average class size is 35. UNF prides itself on its internship opportunities, and 90% of seniors have taken advantage of these real-world experiences. UNF offers 125 majors, including international business, coastal and marine biology, and nutrition and dietetics, as well as 75 minors. The UNF Transportation and Logistics Flagship Program is considered one of the best in the nation and recently received a $2.5 million gift to house the Crowly Center. This gift will allow students to get more hands-on experience and fresh perspectives on transportation and logistics challenges. UNF recently added a BA in French and Francophone Studies in conjunction with the UNF International Center. UNF was named the #7 Most Affordable LGBTQ-Friendly Institution in the U.S. and #1 in Florida by Student Loan Hero.

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA (USF), Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Sarasota
Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen
GPA: Fall 3.97-4.48; Summer 3.57-4.11
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1230-1370; Summer 1090-1170; ACT: Fall 26-31; Summer 22-25
USF is ranked the #46 Public University in America by U.S. News and World Report. The main campus is located in Tampa, 20 minutes northeast of downtown. Forbes recently named Tampa the #1 Emerging Tech City. Students interested in medicine and research have numerous opportunities as USF is located near four major hospitals. USF offers 200 undergraduate degrees and 700 student clubs and organizations. Opening in Fall 2022 will be the Judy Genshaft Honors College. Construction is also underway for a new wellness center and a new 120,000 sq. ft. innovation building. New degrees this year include supply chain management, biomedical engineering, environmental engineering, and information science, with several concentrations to choose from. The school also includes two smaller campuses: St. Pete and Sarasota-Manatee. The St. Pete campus is small and ideal for students who want a small liberal arts feel. The Sarasota-Manatee campus offers 20 undergraduate degrees and has ties to the Mote Marine Lab, ideal for students pursuing careers in science. The school received more than 50,000 applications this year and enrolled 6,300 students, the school’s largest class ever.

Middle 50% of Admitted First Time in College 2021 Freshmen 
GPA: Fall 3.61-4.2; Summer 3.36-4.02
Standardized Tests – SAT: Fall 1060-1240; Summer 1020-1180; ACT: Fall 21-27; Summer 20-24
UWF is located in Pensacola, the westernmost city in Florida’s panhandle. UWF has been named one of the Best Southeastern Colleges by the Princeton Review and one of the Most Military-Friendly Colleges in the U.S. UWF is a powerhouse in Division II athletics; the Argonauts are the reigning NCAA DII Football National Champions and hold a total of 115 championships across 15 NCAA teams. The school is home to 13,000 students, making it large but still feeling close-knit. The average class size is 28 students, and 80% of classes hold fewer than 60. Students get to choose from 70 degree programs across five academic colleges, with popular majors including health, business, or education-related fields. UWF students continuously rank in the top for first-time pass rates of the CPA exam.

Additional Assistance
For any questions about applying to any of the Florida public schools or to any other college, contact us at 1-954-414-9986. We’re here to support you in navigating this stressful time. And don’t forget to join us on September 8 at 7 pm EST for a free webinar.

Upcoming Webinars
September 8 @ 7pm EST
Applying to Four Year Universities in Florida
Register and more info: https://bit.ly/3k9yYa8
Cost – FREE

September 22 @ 7pm EST
Using Extracurricular Activities to Gain the Edge in College Admissions
Register and more info: https://bit.ly/3gYXc4n
Cost – FREE