FSU touts highest four-year graduation rate in state history

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By: Jake Stofan | Capitol News Service
June 29, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CNS) -- Florida State University is boasting the highest graduation rate in state history. Seven out of ten students finish within four years.

The success was highlighted at the Board of Governor’s meeting, Tuesday.

“We're proud of our progress and we don't take it for granted and we certainly are not going to let our foot off the gas,” said FSU President John Thrasher.

Students we spoke with say graduating in fours years helps them in the long run.

“We definitely will have like less student loans and stuff,” said FSU freshman Tiffany Weidner.

“You get more experience than someone who wouldn't graduate in four years,” said another freshman at Florida State, Brendan Ledesma. "You get more experience in the actual workforce.”

The graduation rate is up three percent over last year and almost 20 percent since 2005.

FSU says the steady increase is the result of a targeted approach, including what’s called the Take 15 Initiative, which encourages students to take 15 credit hours a semester.

“It really helps them focus and it helps them do better because they have to manage their time and be smart about the work that they're doing,” said Dean of Undergraduate Studies Karen Laughlin.

The increasing student success at FSU has also made it a popular choice for students applying for college.

A record 51,000 students applied for the 2018 Summer and Fall semesters.

But, the university will have to turn away about nine out of ten applicants.

President Thrasher says the high level of interest has its own challenges

“We don't want to cut folks out that really have an opportunity to come here and so we're enhancing our opportunity in our CARE program, which goes out and tries to solicit kids that probably may be on the margin,” said Thrasher.

FSU is currently ranked the 33rd best public university in the country.

Leadership hopes to break into the top 25 within the next three years.

FSU announced it will be getting $98.7 million in performance funding this week.

That money will go towards helping the university reach its goals.

By: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 26, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- According to the latest data reported in the State University System's 2018 Accountability Plan, Florida State University has the best four-year graduation rate of any public university in the Sunshine State.

FSU's four-year graduation rate sits at 68.4 percent, nearly three points higher than last year's, and is the highest graduation rate in the State University System's history.

"This wonderful news is the result of hard work and creative thinking by faculty and staff across campus,” FSU President John Thrasher said. “They are putting students on a path toward earning a degree while providing them with a strong undergraduate experience that prepares them to be successful after graduation.”

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