A Transformational Moment in New College History

How can we transform New College from what it is now, a top-ranked public liberal arts college, into a truly exceptional, national institution?

A Transformational Moment in New College History

Early in the summer of 2016, the Florida Board of Governors (the oversight body for all state universities) asked a question of New College leaders — how can we transform New College from what it is now, a top-ranked public liberal arts college, into a truly exceptional, national institution?

The smallest of Florida’s 12 universities, Sarasota-based New College would increase its enrollment from 850 students this fall to 1,200 by the fall of 2022. The plan would require hiring new faculty and staff members and spending $45 million on construction, including a new multi-use student center. How soon can this happen and how will it affect existing programs? We answer your questions here.

Growth will allow New College to increase its four-year graduation rate to more than 80 percent, competitive with the very best universities in the country. It will provide more interns and graduates to stoke the local economy and will further increase New College’s throughput as a critical pipeline for Florida’s scientists, researchers, and academics. State support of New College growth will allow New College and its neighboring institutions to propel the Sarasota-Manatee region into one of the nation’s most creative scientific, artistic, and entrepreneurial centers. See growth plan history.

With the unanimous backing of the state university system’s Board of Governors, New College could receive funding over the next three years to carry out the plan, including $5.4 million in the 2017 state budget. Read the New College news release about the plan.

Read recent media coverage.
See the growth plan.


New College is a “shining star” among colleges, with a record comparable to national and private institutions. With high ranks and outstanding performance, 15 percent of graduates go on to Ph.D.s in science, math, and engineering — the third-highest in the U.S. We provide a great education at a low cost (less than $8,000 a year in-state) and students incur little debt, making it a boon for low-income families; 30 percent receive Pell Grants. Planning for new residence halls has begun and construction will likely begin in 2019-2020.

Growth will propel New College into the Top 25 nationally:

  • New College will work to improve student affairs, boosting retention and graduation rates.
  • New College will grow from approximately 800 students to 1,200 students by the year 2023. This growth would be incremental and boosted by increased retention numbers.
  • New College will boost faculty and staff as the student population grows, but will maintain the crucial 10:1 student-faculty ratio.
  • New College will grow facilities to modernize its campus. These funds will be requested in year 18-19 and 19-20. In addition, the College is exploring public-private partnerships (P3) for housing infrastructure needs.
  • New College will utilize synergies with the College Consortium and other resources, which shares buildings (library and physical plant, among others).

Additional Information

Growth Plan History

The proposal developed calls for a five-year expansion that will see an increase in enrollment of 50 percent, from 800 to 1,200 students, along with the necessary hiring of additional faculty and staff.

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How fast will enrollment grow? Will there be new Areas of Concentration or programs? We answer your questions here.

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Resources and links are available here.

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