WUFT News

Santa Fe College ranked among best community colleges

By on September 6th, 2012

Danny Gibble / WUFT-FM

Santa Fe College President Jackson Sasser addresses the audience at a ceremony Wednesday after it was announced that the institution had been named one of the top 10 community colleges in the country. The Aspen Institute, the organization that gave the award, judged colleges on academic achievement, degree completion, job placement, and minority and low-income student accomplishments. Santa Fe is eligible for a $1 million prize fund.

Santa Fe College recently held a ceremony in honor of its achievement as one of the top community colleges in the nation, but there could be more accolades to come.

The college announced Wednesday that it is ranked as one of the top 10 community colleges in the nation and is eligible for a $1 million prize fund.

Santa Fe College President Jackson Sasser spoke at the ceremony, saying he believed the rank wouldn’t be possible without a great community.

“This is a community celebration,” he said. “Certainly, Santa Fe is a symbol of that today, but this is a celebration of success in the whole community.”

The Aspen Institute, the educational organization that gave out out the award, judged colleges on academic achievement, degree completion, job placement, and minority and low-income student accomplishments.

“We’ve routinely had some the highest retention in graduation rates in the country on top of some of the highest transfer rates in the state,” said David Durkee, student body president.

Durkee said he felt a lot of pride for himself and fellow students, and said he was honored with the achievements of his school.

“It’s not a huge surprise having been here for a few years now,” he said. “The quality of the instructions that we have, (and) the type of staff and administration who are really student centered. Honestly, it’s a well-deserved award.”

Many local and state politicians went to the ceremony to congratulate the school on its award.

State Representative Elect Clovis Watson Jr. said he thought the ranking will bring more students to Santa Fe College to get their degrees.

“Maybe some students come here as a springboard to go to universities or other four-year institutions, but now Santa Fe College is a four-year institution as well,” he said. “They come to Santa Fe to be a part of Santa Fe and graduate Santa Fe and go out to the job market. That’s what I did, and I think others will follow, in particularly now that it is the top 10.”

Watson, a former Santa Fe College student, said above all of the accolades, students have to look at the employees for the success.

“I think it will go a long way when they graduate from here and go in the job market and say ‘I graduated from a top-10 college.’ That’s a big deal,” he said.

Sasser praised his faculty and staff with the amount of work they put in and during the ceremony, and had everyone in the audience stand up to be thanked.

In November, the Aspen Institute will tour each ranked college. The selection for top community college in the nation will come in March from Washington, D.C.

Chris Alcantara edited this story online.


This entry was posted in Local and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Local

Evergreen sign

Gainesville Cemetery Recognized as Historical Landmark

Gainesville’s Evergreen Cemetery, which has been active for 158 years and houses more than 10,000 graves, received the State of Florida Historical Marker on April 12.


April 18, 2014: Afternoon News in 90

A video roundup of local, state and national stories for readers in North Central Florida.


Alachua Tax Collector Von Fraser Dies at 76

Von Fraser, who has served as Alachua County’s Tax Collector for 33 years, died early Thursday morning at the age of 76.


Blueberries continue to adapt and thrive in Florida fields, and as a result new jobs are popping up around the state.

Blueberry Industry Brings Blossoming Job Opportunities

An increase in harvests of Florida blueberries helps economy in North Central Florida.


Concerns Raised About Corporal Punishment in North Central Florida Schools

Suwannee County School District has the highest number of corporal punishment incidents in Florida for the 2011-12 school year. Founder of Floridians Against Corporal Punishment in Public School has made Suwannee County the next goal of his civil rights campaign.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments