US News: Florida remains nation’s #1 for higher education

May 03, 2023
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Florida was ranked No. 1 in the nation for higher education for seventh straight year, according to U.S. News & World Report. Florida Polytechnic University is one of 12 public institutions within the State University System.

U.S. News & World Report has once again named Florida the top state in the country for higher education. Florida’s higher education system has held the top spot since the inception of the rankings in 2017. Florida Polytechnic University is one of 12 public institutions within the State University System.

“It is exciting to see how the hard work of Florida Poly and our state university peers, as well as the commitment of our elected officials to an excellent higher education experience, are again being recognized as the best in the nation,” said Dr. Randy K. Avent, president of Florida Poly. “As Florida’s only all-STEM university, we are proud of being an integral part of the State University System and Florida’s higher education as a whole. We will continue our focus on our mission to provide a premier education in engineering and applied sciences.” 

Metrics considered by U.S News & World Report include the time it takes students to complete two- and four-year college programs, the cost of in-state tuition and fees, and the debt burden that college graduates carry. Florida improved on two of the five metrics, including four-year graduation rate and educational attainment. Florida remained #1 for the lowest tuition and fees.

This achievement can be credited to the collective commitment of our elected leaders, the Board of Governors, and the state universities to student success and affordability.

“Florida’s success would not be possible without the exceptional leadership at our 12 public universities, Governor DeSantis’s commitment to excellence in higher education, and the unwavering support of our legislative leaders. I am truly grateful for their investment and continued support,” said Brian Lamb, chair of the Board of Governors, which oversees the State University System. “Florida has long been a national leader in higher education, and retaining this No. 1 ranking proves the Florida way is working. By prioritizing student success, with an emphasis on providing all students a high-quality, low-cost education, Florida’s universities are leaning in to produce top-tier talent to meet workforce needs, increase research capabilities, and retain the best and brightest faculty whose excellence and expertise provide the platform from which we create the future.”

The SUS recently announced a 12% five-year increase in graduation rates and a 49% year-over-year drop in the cost-to-the-student for a bachelor’s degree. Due to support from elected leaders and initiatives that drive down costs, the average SUS student pays less than $3,400 for a bachelor’s degree once financial aid is included. Additionally, 75% of resident undergrads had no loans during the 2020-21 academic year, up from 69% the previous year.

“This recognition affirms the incredible collaboration among our universities, our System, and Governor DeSantis and our State Legislature to prioritize Florida’s students,” said Ray Rodrigues, chancellor of the State University System. “Accountability is key, and the state’s investments in performance-based funding have given our System the tools necessary for our students to achieve a higher quality of education, graduate faster, with little to no debt.”

In the fall of 2020, the Board of Governors added the Florida ScoreBoard on the homepage to provide a transparent way for all interested parties to monitor the SUS’s performance on the prioritized metrics.


Lydia Guzmán
Director of Communications