Introduction to UNF
The University of North Florida (UNF) was chartered as a state university in 1965 and is one of 12 public universities within the State University System of Florida (SUS). UNF aspires to be an institution of choice, nationally recognized for high-caliber students, faculty, and staff.
UNF began offering classes in 1972 to a 2,000-member student body and was initially established as an upper-division and master’s degree-granting institution. In 1984, freshmen and sophomores were admitted. In 1990, UNF launched a doctoral program in educational leadership. In 2007, UNF added a doctorate in nursing practice and a doctorate in physical therapy. And in 2016, UNF offered a post-MSN doctor of nursing practice and a doctorate in clinical nutrition.
In 2004, former President John Delaney allocated special funding to create UNF’s Flagship Programs. This initiative was designed to strengthen some of our best recognized academic programs, along with those programs that had significant potential to become national models and make them signature programs for our university. In July 2005, UNF established its first flagship program, the Brooks College of Health’s School of Nursing. Five other programs followed, including Transportation and Logistics and International Business, both in May 2006; Coastal Biology in October 2006; and the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Department of Music in June 2011. All six of these programs have received and graduated students who have achieved levels of national prominence.
Building on our belief that students can develop incredible insights and skills by researching with faculty mentors, and by walking off the UNF campus to engage with local and international communities, we also began our transformational learning opportunity (TLO) program in 2004. As a part of this effort, the University of North Florida created the Center for Community-Based Learning. The TLOs and the Center for Community-Based Learning provide UNF students with experiences that are an integral component of this institution’s mission to impact the student’s professional and personal development significantly.
UNF is highly ranked nationwide on a leading list of universities offering short-term study-abroad programs. This standing confirms that UNF’s students are internationally engaged. The university supports short- and longer-term engagement with study-abroad scholarships, such as TLOs and the Student Affairs International Learning Scholarships. The University of North Florida seeks to provide a unique learning opportunity for academically talented students to experience a greater global community.
Fall of 2017, the student body had about 16,500 students enrolled in 55 undergraduate degree programs with 78 areas of concentration, 30 master’s degree programs with 58 areas of concentration, and five doctoral degree programs with three areas of concentration, all consistent with its mission. UNF employed 550 full-time instructional faculty in the fall of 2016, about 80 percent of whom had a Ph.D. or other appropriate terminal degree. UNF has also maintained a 1:19 faculty-to-student ratio, consistent with the institution’s mission to maintain an unreserved commitment to student success.
UNF remains one of the more selective comprehensive universities in America. The 2017 fall freshman class entered with an average SAT score of 1241 (excluding the writing test) and an ACT score of 26.4. The same class entered with a 4.27 grade point average. About 40 percent of the freshman applicants who applied were admitted in the fall 2017 class, reflecting the university’s commitment to a high-quality undergraduate education.
UNF maintains an unreserved commitment to student success with a diverse, supportive campus culture and the awareness that exposure to a blend of students, faculty, and staff offers a rich and rewarding educational experience. The fall 2017 student body consisted of about 57 percent women, 31 percent ethnic/racial minorities, and 88 percent undergraduates. These students, coupled with an increasing number of international students and a core of graduate students, enable UNF to provide a unique learning environment.