Machen to student senate: Despite cuts, UF can still be top 10 school | Gainesville.com | The Gainesville Sun | Gainesville, FL
You all may have heard that UF is getting their budgets slashed in an unprecedented fashion. But if you really look at the long term, then UF is showing a pattern of substantial improvement over the last 30 years. It's reasonable to assume that the future is so bright for the Gator Nation that we will have to wear shades.
Let's look at the facts:
1. In the early 90's UF was ranked the 29th overall best public university in the USA, and peaked at 13th overall in 2007. We had a little bump in the road for 2008, but in the long run the UF machine will grow to epic proportions.
2. For the first time UF is starting to build an endowment that is able to match some of the strongest research universities (both private & public).
3. UF has already raised $700 million over the last 3 years in their latest Capital Campaign, and they are projected to reach $1.5 billion in just a few more years. For the first time the Alumni are really striving to make gains on this end.
4. The population in the state of Florida is projected to reach 28 million by the year 2030, and it's a fact that their will be an substantial increase in demand for the FTIC incoming classes. Also Bright Futures is politically untouchable and it's almost a given that the Legislature will continue to pay the tab for Florida's students (although I do think the present system needs to be tweaked).
5. The athletic program is easily one of the strongest in the nation, and will continue to have great success in the years to come. This will be a huge draw for incoming freshmen. Just look at how the demand has spiked since the 3 national championships! (from 55% admitted to 36% admitted, and 5,000 more students have applied since 2005)
6. The money raised from Tuition Differential alone will bring in enough instuctors and junior faculty that Class-Sizes will reduce to the teens by 2010.
7. The rest of the nation is now staring to pay attention to the biomedical research and life sciences that the state is now starting to produce. The business community in Florida is under the disposition that they must shift our economy from Agriculture and Tourism to a more diversified economy (right now the state generates over $700 billion, and it's projected to grow amazingly after we get over the housing bust).
8. The Florida Board of Governors and the Legislature are now in deep discussions about changing how we fund universities in the state of Florida. Basically the funding formula will be changed to benefit UF & FSU while at the same time the Directional Universities will be taken care of as well.
9. UF & FSU are now really starting to work together so that they can both raise at the same time. Basically the lobbying power has increased 10 fold.
* For all of these reasons I believe that UF & FSU are on the rise. This is a long term pattern that will show substantial improvement in the years to come.