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FSU Preeminence Update 

With the start of interim committee meetings in September, the 2014 legislative season officially got underway. Moreover, the fall semester heralded a new era for Florida State University as one of the state’s preeminent universities.

This elevated status, which was ratified by the Board of Governors in June, was achieved through the university meeting extensive standards of excellence.

In its 2014 edition of “America’s Best Colleges,” U.S. News & World Report moved Florida State up to 40th among all public universities. This accomplishment prompted Governor Scott to issue a congratulatory letter to President Barron, which you are welcome to review here.

President Barron touted this advancement in the national rankings to the House Higher Education Committee during an update on our preeminent status. The president’s presentation may be viewed here.

One component of the preeminence legislation has Florida State creating an entrepreneurial college. President Barron recently provided an update to Governor Scott on this initiative, which he outlined in a white paper titled, “A Comprehensive Plan for Job Creation and Student Career Success.” This document details the entrepreneurial concept and may be viewed here.

Central to the job-creation and career-success plan is a sequential six- course minor in entrepreneurship through the College of Business, which was initiated this fall and is open to all students. The Governor’s response to the president’s plan was quite favorable, and his written expression of support may be viewed here.

The standing of Florida State as one of the best public research universities in the country will continue to advance, among members of the Florida legislature and beyond.

We are proud of the fact that our rankings and our focus on student career success has received recognition and endorsement by our Governor and our State.



Top 25 Proposal

President Barron’s “Top 25” proposal is designed to advance Florida State University to a top 25 national ranking among public universities.  This 8-page proposal is available here to download and review and a summary is provided through the news release below.

As you know, legislators passed and the Governor signed into law a bill designating FSU as “Preeminent.”  $15 million in recurring funding was allocated for the coming year to begin to implement the proposal.  The full plan calls for additional state funding over a five year timeframe, the University intends to match the state’s financial commitment through increased philanthropy directed toward achieving a Top 25 ranking.

News Release - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Florida State announces plan to continue rise in national rankings

Florida State University is well positioned to continue its rise to preeminence in independent national rankings with the development of a comprehensive plan to move into the Top 25 of public universities in the nation.

Florida State is currently listed 40th among public universities by U.S. News & World Report, while also being recognized at the top of their list in efficiency among all highly ranked universities.

“I have no doubt Florida State can reach the Top 25 within a fairly short period of time if our investments are strategic. We have momentum, our plan is realistic, and with our current rankings in both quality and efficiency, it is clear we know how to invest a dollar,” said Florida State President Eric J. Barron.  “We intend to be a national model for affordable and accessible excellence – this is a plan that delivers for the state of Florida.”

The plan for continuing Florida State’s rise into the Top 25 of public universities calls for targeted investments in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses and programs and a comprehensive focus on entrepreneurial educational initiatives. These initiatives are intended to position the university as a preeminent national leader in student career readiness and job placement. Please click here to download the plan.

Representing 300,000 alumni, the Florida State University Alumni Association  unanimously endorsed Florida State’s plan to reach the Top 25.  Please click here to download the resolution.

“The Florida State Alumni Association commissioned a scientific survey of its graduates that revealed the value of their Florida State degree as their highest priority,” said Scott F. Atwell, president of the Alumni Association. “There are few better ways of enhancing the value of Florida State degrees already earned as well as those yet to be awarded than to increase the national ranking of the university.”

Top 25 Proposal – Talking Points

“Top 25” is a Florida State proposal for enhancing University excellence, achieving national prominence, and securing greater job opportunities for FSU students.

  • According to US News and World Report, seven states have at least one university ranked in the top 10; Florida has none, despite it being the fourth most populous state in the country.
  • Eleven states, including Texas, Virginia and Georgia, have two or more universities that rank higher than Florida’s second-highest ranked public university.
  • By moving the University of Florida into the top 10, and Florida State University into the top 25, the state of Florida would pass Texas and tie Georgia.
  • A university’s high national ranking correlates with student-career success.
  • If FSU attained a top 25 ranking, we would also become a state and national leader in student-career readiness and job placement.
  • Florida State University is achieving excellence more efficiently than any other research university, as evidenced by its top ranking in efficiency by US News and World Report for 2013.
  • According to US News and World Report, FSU is currently ranked number 40 among publics and number 91 among all universities, gaining 18 places in quality since 2008.
  • In contrast, the university has dropped 5 places to number 212 in financial resources.
  • Florida State University is poised to be a national leader in the STEM fields.
  • The Top 25 proposal includes a $15 million investment of state dollars per year for 5 years, with a dollar-for-dollar match in private funds
  • With this allocation of $15 million per year for 5 years, FSU will:
    • Become one of the top universities in the nation in the mathematical, physical, and natural sciences attracting the interest of firms and students by:
      • Hiring 200 faculty in key STEM fields and provide the infrastructure needed to support them
      • Recruiting national academy-level faculty
      • Attracting STEM student scholars
      • Becoming the state’s top producer of STEM degrees in mathematical, physical and natural sciences
    • Become one of the most entrepreneurial universities in the nation by expanding our entrepreneurship program campus-wide to give all students the opportunity to learn fundamental business practices and enhance their career potential
    • Result in significant successes for FSU and the State of Florida through this joint strategic investment, including:
      • Achieving a top 25 public university rank
      • Achieving national leadership in STEM
      • FSU becoming a national leader in job readiness and career placement
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Important Dates


  • The 2014 Legislative Session begins on Tuesday, March 4th.
  • FSU Day at the Capitol --  Tuesday, April 1, 2014
  • Seminole Evening --  Monday, March 31, 2014

 Legislative Interim Committee Meetings:

  Week of November 4, 2013
  Week of December 9, 2013
  Week of January 6, 2014
  Week of January 13, 2014
  Week of February 3, 2014
  Week of February 10, 2014
  Week of February 17

More news about Florida State is on the University's official news site.

More news about the State University Sytem of Florida is on the System's official news site.

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