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LAKELAND, Fla. (July 15, 2021) — Florida Southern College’s schools of Business, Education, and Nursing have been recognized for their outstanding commitment to engaged, hands-on learning by the 2021-2022 Colleges of Distinction guidebook and website. These honors highlight Florida Southern’s focus on student success and satisfaction in all three areas of study.

For the ninth straight year, the organization also confirmed the FSC’s overall dedication to fostering a dynamic, student-centered learning community by awarding state and national recognitions.

“We’re proud of this wonderful and important recognition from the Colleges of Distinction,” said Dr. Anne B. Kerr, president of Florida Southern College. “Our academic programs continue to receive critical acclaim on a nationwide basis, confirming our ongoing dedication to excellence.”

Florida Southern’s Barney Barnett School of Business and Free Enterprise was one of just nine business programs in Florida to be recognized by Colleges of Distinction.  Among the organization’s selection criteria were a focus on career-relevant courses with a broad set of multidisciplinary perspectives and student opportunities for real-world experience through industry internships and other forms of professional engagement.

FSC’s School of Education, one of just eight Florida-based institutions to receive this special recognition, was chosen for its commitment to nurturing and supporting future educators. Selection criteria included a stable reputation for quality and success, a well-rounded multidisciplinary program, and practical experience in student teaching to boost preparation and confidence levels.

The School of Nursing and Health Sciences at FSC was one of just five nursing programs in Florida to receive special recognition. Its selection was based on criteria such as the core tenets of stability and excellence, faculty who are recognized for their impressive experience and research, practical learning opportunities, and the School’s national CCNE accreditations and stellar pass rates on the NCLEX pre-licensure exams.

“We complete a thorough review of the programs in question before giving the awards,” said Tyson Schritter, chief operating officer for Colleges of Distinction. “We’re looking for such qualities as accreditation, breadth of program, advising and mentoring, integration of career services, and successful outcomes for students. It’s wonderful to see how Florida Southern College really exemplifies these qualities.”

Every year since 2013, the Colleges of Distinction guidebook has recognized Florida Southern for overall distinction as one of the highest-impact providers of a student-centered undergraduate education in the State of Florida and the nation. This year, FSC was one of only 10 Florida-based institutions – six private and four public – to receive overall recognition out of the 390-plus colleges and universities that made the overall list.

Florida Southern College earns its recognition for excellence through student-centered programs that include experiential education, student-faculty collaborations, learning communities, a guaranteed internship, an elite honors program, and a Junior Journey travel program, among other initiatives.

The unique methodology employed by Colleges of Distinction sets it apart from other U.S. school guides by promoting student engagement over prestige. Instead of traditional rankings, Colleges of Distinction advocates for schools whose undergraduate experiences are grounded in four overarching distinctions: engaged students, great teaching, a vibrant community, and successful outcomes.

A trusted resource for students and parents since 2000, the Colleges of Distinction guide provides school profiles, customized tools, and resources designed to help students and their parents find the right college at which to learn, grow, and succeed. Staff and advisors conduct extensive research, visiting hundreds of colleges and talking with thousands of students, graduates, college presidents, provosts, deans, administrators, and professors to compile their annual recommendations of U.S. colleges and universities that deliver educational excellence.

See FSC’s page on the Colleges of Distinction website HERE.

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