USF Polytechnic Expands, Plans to Hire 55 People

Increased enrollment and growth at USF's Polytechnic campus in Lakeland is resulting in about 40 staff members moving into a new building at 439 S. Florida Ave. The move is to be completed by May.

"We are moving our back office operations to the new building to vacate space for faculty," says Alice Murray, USF's regional vice chancellor of campus planning. "In this academic year, we are hiring 36 new faculty members and we need to have space for them on campus."

USF Polytech will add 55 positions this academic year, Murray says. "We are currently in the recruitment process for many of the positions we are hiring for," Murray says. "In addition to the faculty positions, we are hiring in the areas of marketing, development, support staff, student services and finance."

USF Polytech is Florida's only post-secondary polytechnic school, and enrollment numbers have been growing since it opened three years ago.

"Our main focus is building the whole polytechnic model, which is a very different from a traditional model," says Murray. "Applied polytechnic model is interdisciplinary in nature and involves experiential learning. It is not just studying theory like students would do in a traditional environment; it involves the students being actively engaged in problem solving, working hands-on and building relationships with businesses to prepare students to enter their respective career fields."

Currently USF Polytech serves juniors, seniors and graduate students only, however, Murray says that will soon change.

"We want to expand our campus and its programs to freshmen and sophomores," she says. "We are currently in the accreditation process and hope that by fall 2012, we can open the campus up to those students as well."

Writer: Kimberly Patterson
Source: Alice Murray, USF Polytech

Read more articles by Kimberly Patterson.

Kimberly Patterson is a news editor for 83 Degrees Media in the Tampa Bay region of Florida.
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