AVON PARK - Washington Monthly magazine recently ranked South Florida State College 50th among 700 community colleges in the United States.
Four other Florida college system institutions made the list: North Florida Community College ranked number two; Chipola College ranked number 14; Miami Dade College ranked number 28; and Valencia College ranked number 36.
"It is an honor to be considered among these top 50 colleges in the country," said Dr. Thomas C. Leitzel, president of SFSC. "It reflects our commitment to the college mission and to our service district of Highlands, Hardee and DeSoto counties. Because of our dedicated and caring employees, our students get the education and support they need to become successful in the workforce or in pursuit of further education."
Using data from the Community College Survey of Student Engagement and U.S. Department of Education, Washington Monthly rates community colleges in a number of areas, including collaborative learning, student effort, academic rigor, student-faculty interaction, and support for learning. Retention, graduation and completion rates are also factored in to the rankings. Data is collected from 700 community colleges, which is more than two-thirds of all community colleges in the United States.
According to Washington Monthly's editor, "We designed the Washington Monthly college rankings to embody the American higher education compact at the institutional level. Instead of lauding colleges for closing their doors to all but an elite few, we give high marks to institutions that enroll low-income students, help them graduate and don't charge them an arm and a leg to attend."
"These rankings are especially important because they highlight the system's mission of providing access to low-cost, high-quality education and job training," said FCS Chancellor Randy Hanna. "I am extremely proud of all of our colleges for helping prepare Floridians for high-skill, high-wage jobs."
SFSC is one of 28 colleges in the Florida College System (and serves DeSoto, Hardee and Highlands counties. Considered one of the most comprehensive colleges in Florida, SFSC awards a Bachelor in Applied Science in Supervision and Management degree, associate in arts degrees, associate in science degrees, associate in applied science degrees, applied technology diplomas, college credit certificates and occupational certificates. The college also offers adult education, corporate education and community education programs.