FGCU students head back to class amid university growth

Florida Gulf Coast University students return to class for the fall semester Monday, and the university is showing dramatic growth.

“We’ve grown out of all the space that was already here,” said FGCU President Mike Martin.

A business and enrollment boom is taking over, and their coursework reflects job demand in Southwest Florida.

“I’m not sure anyone fully anticipated we’d get to 15,000 as fast as we did and we believe we have a major initiative aimed at student success and getting students through,” Martin said.

They are launching a construction engineering program and expanding popular nursing and entrepreneurship programs.

“The more we make this a university community, the better for all of us,” Martin said.

Also being added to campus is a new wellness and recreation center along with a community counseling center.

Students say they they love the small feel of the school and the nationally-recognized programs.

“Yeah it’s really grown, I think especially with Dunk City being in the tournament a couple of years ago, you definitely see more students coming to FGCU,” said Senior Brian Cummings.

They are excited to see growth and to be mentioned alongside University of Florida and Florida State University.

FGCU will have several new classes including one that’s focused on marijuana called “Weed: The Impact of Marijuana” that will dive into the drug’s history, cultural impact and legality.

Reporter:Michelle Mackonochie
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