Best Colleges in Florida

Search Colleges

Close
Online or Campus

Florida provides blue skies, clear weather and an excellent environment for post-secondary education. Its robust state university system and sprawling system of two-year schools provides tremendous choices.

Options for degree seekers include famous names like the University of Florida and Florida State. Excellent private schools also abound, like Trinity Baptist College and Stetson University. Florida’s community colleges and trade schools provide a fast track to any number of excellent professional opportunities.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed with so many choices and so much data. Fortunately, we have applied our rigorous methodology to the latest education data to rank the best colleges in Florida, including the top four-year and two-year schools. It pulls information from federal databases and includes acceptance, enrollment, and graduation rate. State data covers important things like student loan default rate.

2016 Online Education Trends Report: Learn how online programs are changing the face of higher education.

Florida features some of the most famous and best-ranked schools in the country, including the likes of the University of Florida, Florida State and the University of Miami.

Students looking for a religious education pursue options like the Baptist College of Florida, the Hindu University of America and the Talmudic University of Florida to meet their spiritual needs. Aspiring creative professionals look to Fullsail University for training in video game design or film and television.

Admission standards at famous schools can be rigorous. Florida State, for example, admits only 55% of students that apply. The average high school GPA for incoming FSU students is 3.92, as reported by Princeton Review, so academic excellence is required.
Students in need of a more budget-friendly option should be careful. Funding troubles hit low-performance schools as part of the state’s new performance-based funding scheme. This may mean reductions in state funding and financial aid for students in affected schools. With these factors in mind, review this year’s finalized list of the best 4-year schools in Florida.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Graduation Rate Location Description    
1

University of Florida

 2/587.51%Gainesville, FL

campus_University_of_FLorida

The University of Florida in Gainesville is a powerhouse in both academics and athletics. It is the oldest campus in the State University System of Florida, founded in 1853 and operating at its current campus site since 1906.

It is one of the best Florida colleges for sports. Its “Florida Gator” men’s football and basketball teams compete for national championships on a yearly basis. The football team plays in a stadium nicknamed “the swamp” and they have won three national titles (1996, 2006, 2008). The basketball team has been dominant in recent years, winning national titles in 2006 and 2007.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
2

New College of Florida

 2/569.37%Sarasota, FL

campus_New_College_of_Florida

Located on the Gulf Coast in Sarasota, New College of Florida is an honors college of the State University System of Florida. The school was founded with the values of freedom of inquiry and the responsibility of individual students for their own education.

New College is unique among colleges in Florida, because its academic programs rely on Narrative Evaluations, a Contract System, Independent Study Projects, and by requiring that each student complete a Senior Thesis. The 110-acre campus features the Pritzker Marine Biology Research Center that has seven research labs, over 100 aquaria, and a 15,000 gallon research and a display tank.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
3

University of Miami

 5/580.99%Coral Gables, FL

campus_University_of_Miami_Florida

The University of Miami is a private university in Miami-Dade County. The University has become a major research institute attracting $346.6 million per year in sponsored research grants. It also features the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, a graduate medical school that is the oldest medical school in the state.

Along with medicine and research, the University of Florida football team is legendary. It has five national titles (1983, 1987, 1989, 1991, and 2001) and is one of the best in the state for high school football stars. Graduates of its program include Bernie Kosar, Jim Kelly, Ray Lewis, Michael Irvin, and Andre Johnson.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
4

University of South Florida

 2/567.19%Tampa, FL

campus-university-of-south-florida

The University of South Florida is located in Tampa and was founded in 1956. USF has a noteworthy graduate level programs in Public Health, Library and Information Studies, Education, and Criminology.

The university is one of only four public universities in Florida honored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a top-level research university. This is an acknowledgement only received by 2.3% of all universities. The Chronicle of Higher Education recognized USF as the fifth fastest growing research university in the U.S. during the years 2000-2010.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
5

Florida State University

 2/579.13%Tallahassee, FL

campus-florida-state-university

The Florida State University is an American public space-grant and sea-grant research university. It located in Florida’s capital city of Tallahassee and was founded in 1851; its campus is on the oldest continuous site of higher education in the state. Florida State University's International Program (FSU IP) is one of the top study abroad programs in the nation.

Like its cross-state rival, the University of Florida, FSU is one of the best schools for football. The FSU Seminoles have won three national championships: (1993, 1999, and 2013). Famous football alumni include Charlie Ward, Deion Sanders, and Fred Biletnikoff.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
6

University of Central Florida

 2/569.7%Orlando, FL

The University of Central Florida in Orlando has the distinction of being the largest university in the United States by undergraduate enrollment. Of all Florida colleges, it is the biggest. In the Fall of 2014 there were over 52,000 undergraduates at the university. UCF offers over 200 degrees through 13 colleges and 12 satellite campuses.

UCF has its origins in the US space goals of the early 1960s; Florida and national leaders wanted to establish a university near Cape Canaveral. In 1963, the university was founded with the mission of educating students for promising space-age careers in engineering and other technological professions.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
7

University of North Florida

 2/5N/AFL

Located in Jacksonville, on the Atlantic coast, the University of North Florida was established in 1972 on 1,300 acres surrounded by a natural preserve on Jacksonville's Southside. The school grew significantly in the 2000s and UNF became an NCAA Division I school for athletics at the end of the decade.

In 2009, UNF acquired the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville in 2009 as a cultural resource. The acquisition has bolstered UNF's art and design programs. Greek life is significant on campus with 1,300 fraternity and sorority members and 24 Greek-lettered groups.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
8

Rollins College

 5/571.12%Winter Park, FL

Rollins College is a private college established in 1885 in Winter Park and it has the distinction of being Florida's oldest post-secondary institution. Through the Student-Faculty Collaborative Scholarship Program students have the unusual opportunity to participate in the kinds of sophisticated research usually found only at the graduate level.

Of colleges in Florida, Rollins is an excellent school for theater arts majors. The campus features The Annie Russell Theatre, the longest continuously operating theater in Florida placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Annie Russell Theatre tuned 83 in 2016.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
9

Stetson University

 5/561.1%DeLand, FL

Stetson University is a private, nonprofit university in DeLand. The Stetson University College of Law has a strong national reputation, particularly in the field of trial advocacy. It’s known as the first law school in Florida and is located is in Gulfport; it occupies a historic 1920s resort hotel, the Rolyat Hotel.

The School of Music at Stetson was founded in 1936 and is now regarded as one of the nation's finest undergraduate-only music schools. Enrollment is select with around 200 students.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
10

Beacon College

 5/586%Leesburg, FL

Beacon College is unique among Florida colleges for being is the first accredited institution of higher learning to award bachelor’s degrees exclusively to students with dyslexia, ADHD, or other learning disabilities. Beacon has a four-year graduation rate of 83.3%, which surpasses the national average for students with learning disabilities.

Beacon has seven academic majors, but each program was created specifically to meet the needs of students with learning disabilities: Anthrozoology, Business Management, Computer Information Systems, Human Services, Humanities, Psychology, and Studio Arts. The school also offers students 12 minors.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
11

Flagler College – St Augustine

 3/558.45%Saint Augustine, FL

Flagler College in St. Augustine has a historic luxury hotel at its center, the Ponce de León Hotel, built in 1888 for the industrialist Henry Morrison Flagler. The hotel is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Flagler offers its students highly focused and innovative majors and minors, such as Deaf Education, Sport Management, Coastal Environmental Science. The city of St. Augustine is an historic city. It was founded by Spanish explorer Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés in 1565.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
12

Florida Atlantic University

 1/545.95%Boca Raton, FL

Florida Atlantic University was established in 1964 as the first public university in southeast Florida. The university stands on the former Boca Raton Army Airfield that served as an Army Air Corps' radar training facility during World War II.

The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching had designated FAU as a research university with high research activity. It has partnerships with research institutions like The Scripps Research Institute, the Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies, and the Max Planck Society. As far as Florida colleges, Florida Atlantic is great choice for students interested in research.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
13

Florida International University

 2/554.19%Miami, FL

Florida International University has campuses in Miami-Dade County and is the largest university in South Florida. It is also Miami's first and only public research university, offering bachelor’s, master's, and doctoral degrees. In 2016, the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education FIU moved the school into its top research category.

FIU is Hispanic-friendly Florida college. It has a large Hispanic student population and the school is the nation’s leader in awarding bachelor’s and master's degrees to Hispanic students. The college is known for its FIU Model United Nations Program. Each year between 24 and 32 delegates from the school participate.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
14

Florida Southern College

 4/564.99%Lakeland, FL

Florida Southern is a private college in Lakeland and its campus is considered one of the most beautiful in the country. The school is the oldest private college in Florida. It was established in Orlando in 1883 as South Florida Institute. It is one of many Florida colleges with a history that stretches back decades.

The campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a historic district because of the importance of many campus buildings. The school is home to the world’s largest single-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture. Wright is famous for a number of architectural masterpieces, including Fallingwater and the Guggenheim Museum.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
15

Florida Gulf Coast University

 2/549.12%Fort Myers, FL

The school was established in 1991 in Fort Myers. It occupies a natural setting between the Everglades and the Gulf of Mexico. Florida Gulf Coast University emphasizes the quality of its faculty teaching and the job success of graduates after graduation. This is one of the most important Florida colleges in the Fort Myers area.

FGCU is a NCAA Division I school that competes in the Atlantic Sun Conference. It has six men's varsity teams and nine women's teams. Each year, the school’s distinguished speaker series brings world-renowned political and cultural leaders to the campus, men and women like Mikhail Gorbachev and Maya Angelou.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
16

University of West Florida

 2/551.46%Pensacola, FL

The University of West Florida is in Pensacola and has the third largest campus in the State University System. The 1,600 acres-campus is a natural preserve bordered by two rivers and Escambia Bay. The University is military-friendly institution and is close to several military installations.

UWF competes in NCAA Division II athletics and the school is a member of the Gulf South Conference. The men's baseball team won the 2011 NCAA Division II Championship and women's soccer team won the 2012 NCAA Division II Championship.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
17

Palm Beach Atlantic University

 4/554.95%West Palm Beach, FL

Palm Beach Atlantic University is a Christian interdenominational school that seeks to integrate a Christian worldview into a liberal arts and selected professional studies education. The school was founded in West Palm Beach by Jess C. Moody in 1968. At the time, Moody was the pastor of First Baptist Church of West Palm Beach. It is one of many Christian Florida colleges.

The colleges expects everyone who becomes associated with Palm Beach Atlantic University, whether as trustees, officers, members of the faculty, or of the staff, to profess certain core Christian beliefs. Chapel is held four times weekly in the DeSantis Family Chapel.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
18

Jacksonville University

 4/540.82%Jacksonville, FL

Jacksonville University began in 1934 as a two-year college. Until 1958, it was known as Jacksonville Junior College. The University strives to be a welcoming and diverse environment; to that end, they’ve created Campus Ministries; Disabled Student Support; Dolphin Allies; International Student Services; and the Veteran and Military Resource Center.

Each April 16, Jacksonville University celebrates its birthday with Charter Day, a daylong celebration involving students and the campus. The school is one of many Florida colleges with a proud athletic tradition. Two famous athletic alumni include NBA player Dee Brown and MLB player Daniel Murphy.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
19

Eckerd College

 5/565.71%Saint Petersburg, FL

Eckerd College is located in St. Petersburg on a 188-acre campus on Frenchman's Creek and Boca Ciega Bay. The college has a strong environmental ethic. Its Yellow Bike program aims to reduce auto traffic on campus and a solar array on top of the Environmental Studies building produces enough energy to power two buildings.

Eckerd has strong opportunities for students who want to study abroad. Its students have studied in all seven continents. In the UK, Eckerd maintains the Eckerd College Study Centre on London's Gower Street.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
20

University of Tampa

 4/562.38%Tampa, FL

Like several others Florida colleges, the University of Tampa got its beginning growing out from an old luxury hotel. The school was founded in 1931 and then two years later moved to its current location in the then-defunct Tampa Bay Hotel.

In 2016, the University hosted its fifth annual Human Rights Day Conference. The event investigated and celebrated human rights through panels, presentations, and works from faculty, students, and invited guests. The University follows the Four-College Model, which allows each academic area an identity and students and faculty an academic home.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
21

Everglades University

 3/5N/AFL

Everglades University is a private Boca Raton college. It began as American Flyers College in 1990. It became Everglades University in 2011. The school offers academic programs for students focused on an environmental career. Everglades students can study Alternative & Renewable Energy, Environmental Policy, and Land & Energy.

The university offers a Science Degree with a major in Aviation/Aerospace that combines a specific aviation/aerospace industry component. It also offers a Master’s Degree in Aviation Science aviation industry professionals. In addition, Everglades offers a B.S. in alternative medicine.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
22

Southeastern University

 3/542.47%Lakeland, FL

Southeastern University is one of several private Christian Florida colleges. The school is affiliated with the Assemblies of God and the Pentecostal tradition, although it welcomes students from all Christian backgrounds and denominations.

The University has programs to help graduates begin careers. It provides coaching and resources, including the College Central Network (CCN), which serves as a central resource for students to find job opportunities. CCN is also a resource for employers looking to connect with job seekers. There are also Career Coach Specialists that help students prepare a resume and secures internships.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
23

Nova Southeastern University

 4/546.11%Fort Lauderdale, FL

Nova Southeastern University is a private university in Davie that offers professional degrees in law, business, osteopathic medicine, allied health, pharmacy, dentistry, optometry, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and nursing. In 2014 the school established a new campus in Puerto Rico.

NSCU has been recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a research university with "high research activity." It is one of several colleges in Florida with strong research credentials. The Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Ecosystems Science Research Facility is funded in part by a $15-million grant from the National Institute for Science and Technology.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
24

Florida College

 3/551.06%Temple Terrace, FL

Florida College is a Christian college in Temple Terrace that offers a number of degrees, including the Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies, the Bachelor of Arts in Communication, the Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, and the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies, among others.

Of colleges in Florida, Florida College is one of the smallest with just 550 students. The William F. Chatlos Library is home to over 150,000 book, periodical, microform, and media volumes. There are many student clubs, including APPLE (All Positive People Love Education) Club, which many students in the elementary education program belong to.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
25

University of South Florida-St Petersburg

 2/531.82%St. Petersburg, FL

The University of South Florida St. Petersburg (USFSP) is a separately accredited institution in University of South Florida System. It is located in downtown St. Petersburg and has approximately 3,400 undergraduate students. USFSP holds the Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation for supporting dynamic and noteworthy community engagement through scholarships, workshops, and civic leadership.

USFSP is one of the best Florida colleges for Florida Studies. It has a unique program under the Masters in Liberal Arts degree called The Florida Studies Program, which incorporates history, economics, geography, political science, and anthropology. The program places Florida as part of both the American South and the Caribbean Basin.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile

Two-year college programs are a great way to save money on your education. They provide a sample of college life without taking the full plunge. Community colleges often have transfer agreements with four-year schools. This allows students to work on core and required courses for much cheaper tuition.

For career-conscious students, community colleges also provide options for job training. This may include a two-year degree program or it can be a short certificate course. Some schools even offer on-the-job apprenticeship programs allowing students to start working right away.

Florida’s College System includes 28 colleges, 69 campuses and 178 sites across the state. Over 800,000 students attend a variety of courses. These include job training and professional certificates for those in need of a career. Others work on courses they need for a four-year degree. Some professionals find a continuing education course useful or even required.

Florida features some of the top-scoring community colleges in the country, including Miami Dade College, Valencia College, and Broward College. You can find our detailed review of the top two-year programs in the state below.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Graduation Rate Location Description    
1

Indian River State College

 1/539.28%Fort Pierce, FL

campus-indian-river-state-college

Indian River State College is located in Fort Pierce, Florida. At IRSC students can earn an associate degree, technical certificate, or an applied technology diploma. IRSC combines educational excellence with affordability, and was ranked the 3rd most affordable college in the United States by the U.S. Department of Education.

IRSC offers over 150 programs. At IRSC students can earn their associate degree in accounting, agriculture, commercial advertising, and automotive engineering technology. Students can also earn career-oriented technical certificates in the culinary arts, child care management and basic electronics.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
2

North Florida Community College

 1/541.67%Madison, FL

campus-north-florida-community-college

North Florida Community College is located in Madison, Florida. At NFCC students can earn an associate degree or certificate in business, education, or communications and media. NFCC is committed to the success of its students and is home to an Academic Success Center that offers personalized advising and student support programs.

NFCC offers a number of certificate programs in emergency medical technology, criminal justice, and computer systems technology. Students can become certified teachers in the state of Florida through NFCC’s fast-paced Educator Preparation Institute. NFCC also has an offsite Green Industries Institute where students can study farming and sustainable agriculture. NFCC is best for students interested in earning an accelerated professional degree.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
3

Eastern Florida State College

 1/547.36%Cocoa, FL

campus-eastern-florida-state-college

Eastern Florida State College is one of the largest public colleges in Florida. At EFSC students can earn their associate degree or enroll in a certificate program. EFSC is dedicated to preparing its students for immediate entry into the workforce.

At EFSC students can earn an associate degree in aerospace technology, crime scene technology, or veterinary technology. Students can earn an applied technology certificate in dental assisting or emergency medical technology. ESFC also offers adult vocational certificates in firefighting, cosmetology, and practical nursing. Active duty military personnel and veterans can access special services, including veteran-specific financial aid.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
4

Palm Beach State College

 1/533.58%Lake Worth, FL

campus-palm-beach-state-college

Palm Beach State College is the largest institute of higher education in Palm Beach County and one of the main producers of associate degree graduates in the U.S. PBSC offers associate degree programs, professional certificates, career training, and continuing education classes.

PBSC’s Associate in Arts degree is its most popular degree, and high-achieving A.A. students have the option of enrolling in PBSC’s bachelor’s program. Students can \ earn their associate degree in business, agriculture, or health and medical services. PBSC has a vibrant student community. Through their Student Activities Cluster, students can participate in multicultural, recreationally, or academically oriented clubs. PBSC is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students interested in joining an active campus community.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
5

Valencia College

 1/544.46%Orlando, FL

campus-valencia-college

Valencia Community College is located in Orlando, Florida. VCC offers students a variety of academic and technical learning opportunities. VCC has a number of university pre-majors, and an Associate in Arts degree from VCC guarantees students admission into a Florida state university.

At VCC students can also earn a career-oriented associate degree in business management, agriculture or technology. VCC has a Culinary Arts and Food Services program where students can earn an associate degree or certificate in baking, chef training or restaurant management. There are over 60 student clubs on campus, including ROTC. Matador Day is VCC’s largest student event, featuring food, music and games.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
6

Chipola College

 1/542.19%Marianna, FL

Chipola College is one of the best two-year public colleges in Florida. Chipola is committed to providing its students with an accessible, affordable, and quality education. At Chipola, students can earn a general or pre-professional Associate in Arts degree. After completing their A.A. degree, students can go on to earn their bachelor’s degree at a four-year university. Chipola also offers Workforce Development programs that prepare students for immediate entry into the workforce.

Some of the most popular associate degree programs at Chipola include: general studies, nursing, criminal justice, and firefighting. Chipola students can also enroll in career-oriented certificate programs, including automotive mechanics, cosmetology, and emergency medical technology. Chipola has a thriving college athletics program, an on-campus pool, theater, and student radio station.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
7

Pasco-Hernando Community College

 1/533.84%New Port Richey, FL

Pasco-Hernando Community College is a large public college located in New Port Richey, Florida. At PHCC students can earn a technical certificate or an associate degree. A degree from PHCC can lead to a college transfer or to direct employment.

PHCC offers a range of associate degree programs in business, nursing, and the legal profession. PHCC’s campus is home to a dental clinic where students enrolled in dental hygiene programs can learn in a real-world setting with actual patients. There is also a mock emergency room on the PHCC campus for students training to become emergency medical technicians.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
8

Northwest Florida State College

 1/539.91%Niceville, FL

Northwest Florida State College is located in Niceville, Florida, and is part of the Florida State College system. At NWF students can earn pre-university or pre-professional degrees or certificates, depending on their individual goals and interests.

At NWF students can prepare for a four-year degree program by earning an associate degree in the arts and humanities. Students can also earn career-oriented technical degrees in computer programming, architectural engineering technology, and radiation therapy, among others. There’s also the option of participating in speech and debate, ROTC, or a range of athletic programs.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
9

Florida Gateway College

 1/548.04%Lake City, FL

Florida Gateway College is a two-year public college located in Lake City, Florida. At FGC students develop professional skills that meet real-world workforce demands. FGC offers a variety of associate degree programs to anyone who has earned their high school diploma or GED. FGC also offers continuing education certificate programs regardless of high school graduation.

At FGC students can earn an associate degree in cosmetology, criminal justice, and law enforcement. FGC also offers a number of unique career-oriented certificate and associate degree programs, including: turfgrass management, blood bank technology, welding technology, and commercial vehicle operation.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
10

College of Central Florida

 1/540.67%Ocala, FL

The College of Central Florida is located in Ocala, Florida. CF is one of the most affordable colleges in the United States. It’s also known for having one of the best student-to-teacher ratios of any college in Florida, and is known for personalized instruction and support.

At CF students can earn an associate degree in the liberal arts, accounting, and dental assisting. Students who earn an Associate in Art degree from CF are guaranteed admission to one of Florida’s eleven public universities. CF is part of the National Junior College Athletic Association and their athletic teams consistently rank at state and national levels. CF also operates the Appleton Museum of Art, where it regularly hosts fine art exhibitions.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
11

Florida State College at Jacksonville

 1/535.97%Jacksonville, FL

Florida State College at Jacksonville offers two-year associate degree and certificate programs to students interested in earning a professional degree or continuing their education. FSCJ has an open admissions policy and is committed to providing all of its students with an affordable and high-quality education. To enroll, students must have a high school diploma or GED.

Students interested in FSCJ’s associate degree programs can choose from a number of disciplines, including: interior architecture, the visual and performing arts, restaurant management, and funeral services. Students at FSCJ can also earn a variety of certificates in the skilled trades, including: aircraft maintenance, auto body repair, and carpentry. FSCJ is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students interested in preparing for immediate entry into the workforce.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
12

Academy for Nursing and Health Occupations

  74.68%West Palm Beach, FL

The Academy of Nursing and Health Operations is a private not-for-profit institution located in West Palm Beach, Florida. ANHO is dedicated to providing underemployed students with the skills they need to work in the healthcare profession. Programs are offered on a continuous curriculum calendar, enabling students to complete their associate degree or healthcare certificate in a flexible environment.

At the ANHO students can earn their Associate of Science degree in nursing or enroll in a practical nursing certificate program. ANHO also offers certificate programs for students interested in becoming patient care technicians or rehab assistants. Healthcare professionals can enroll in continuing education programs to enhance and update their knowledge.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
13

Daytona State College

 1/536.45%Daytona Beach, FL

Daytona State College offers four-year and two-year degrees in a wide range of academic and professional disciplines. DSC is dedicated to providing its students with a high-quality education at an affordable cost. The school offers a variety of financial aid grants, work-study programs, and veteran’s services.

At DSC students can earn a two-year associate degree in the field of education, business, communications, technology, healthcare, and the legal profession. DSC offers two-year specialty degrees in teaching individuals with hearing impairments, cinematography, respiratory care therapy, and animal health technology. Students can also enroll in certificate programs in the skilled trades and business field.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
14

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale

 3/554.95%Fort Lauderdale, FL

Keiser University Fort Lauderdale is a private not-for-profit college. At KU students receive hands-on experience and personalized attention. KU offers associate degree and certificate programs and, in most cases, allows students to choose between day, evening, or online classes.

At KU, students can earn their Associate of Arts in accounting, criminal justice, paralegal studies, general studies, and health services administration. Students can also earn their Associate of Science in sports medicine, nursing, and video game design, among a variety of other career-oriented disciplines. Students take one class at a time for four weeks. The school is a military-friendly and offers scholarships to qualified military personnel.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
15

Seminole State College of Florida

 1/538.38%Sanford, FL

Seminole State College of Florida is located in Sanford, Florida. Seminole State offers two-year degrees, specialized career certificates, and continuing professional education. Seminole State is dedicated to the personal and professional growth of its students and is great for students interested in receiving career training in a large and active college environment.

Students can earn their associate degree in a variety of fields, including: business, communications, childcare, and the healthcare profession. Seminole State offers a number of its general education courses online, and also offers nine A.S. degrees and 26 certificate programs entirely online. There is a planetarium on-campus where students can watch interactive shows and full-dome video presentations.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
16

South Florida State College

 1/538.66%Avon Park, FL

South Florida State College is located in Avon Park, Florida. At SFSC students can earn an Associate in Arts or an Associate in Science degree. Students interested in transferring to a four-year university should enroll in the A.A. degree program, while the A.S. degree provides students with career-oriented training.

At SFSC students can earn their Associate of Science degree in a variety of professional disciplines, including: landscape technology, computer programming, electronics, and nursing. SFSC also offers one-year training programs that provide students with an Advanced Technical Diploma or College Credit Certificate. Training programs include: cosmetology, food management, and computer technology.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
17

Santa Fe College

 1/561.14%Gainesville, FL

Santa Fe College is a two-year public college located in Gainesville, Florida. Santa Fe College offers associate degree programs for students interested in transferring to a four-year university or for students interested in career training. At SFC students can also enroll in continuing education, college preparation or certificate courses.

For students interested in pursuing a four-year degree, SFC offers A.A. programs in architecture, art education, English, environmental science, and computer science, among others. For students interested in immediate entry into the workforce, SFC offers career-oriented A.S. degrees in business administration, dental hygiene, early childhood education, and digital media technology. Because of its comprehensive degree options, SFC is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
18

SABER College

  91.67%Miami, FL

SABER College, also known as the Spanish American Basic Education and Rehabilitation Inc., is a small, private not-for-profit school in Miami, Florida. SABER is dedicated to building a better future for all of its students. At SABER, students can earn an associate degree in the healthcare profession.

Students can earn an A.S. degree in nursing, but SABER also offers degree programs in health services management and medical billing and coding. SABER offers distance learning opportunities and students can access and complete coursework online using SABER’s Learning Management System. SABER courses are also taught continuously throughout the year to accommodate student schedules. SABER is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students interested in working in the healthcare profession.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
19

Florida College

 3/551.06%Temple Terrace, FL

Florida College is a private college located in Temple Terrace, Florida. Florida College offers rigorous academic programs taught through the lens of a biblical worldview. All of Florida College’s degree programs emphasize religion and religious thinking. Every weekday, FC students attend chapel services.

At FC students can earn a two-year Associate in Arts degree. Students can join a variety of student organizations including speech and debate and student government. FC also has a vibrant musical community and student musicians can join the on-campus wind ensemble, jazz ensemble, string ensemble, or chorus.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
20

Pensacola State College

 1/533.41%Pensacola, FL

Pensacola State College offers associate degree and certificate programs in over 100 academic disciplines. PSC prepares its students for careers in high-demand fields. Students interested in transferring to a four-year university can also earn their Associate in Arts degree.

Pensacola has a range of high-tech facilities that enable students to gain hands-on experience. At Pensacola students can earn an A.S. degree in critical care nursing and veterinary technology. Students pursuing a degree in the healthcare profession can practice on patient simulators in an ER simulation lab. Students can also earn an A.A. degree in the biological sciences, business administration, history, English, and communications. PSC is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students seeking real-world, hands-on experience.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
21

Tallahassee Community College

 1/531.86%Tallahassee, FL

Tallahassee Community College offers a variety of pre-university and pre-professional associate degree programs. TCC’s four-year transfer rate is one of the highest in the state.

At TCC students interested in pre-professional training can earn an Associate in Science degree in a range of disciplines, including: building construction technology, computer technology, healthcare, graphic design technology, and recreation management. FCC also offers a number of certificate programs, including: criminal justice, public safety, business management, and computer technology. Students interested in transferring to a four-year university can earn an Associate in Arts degree.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
22

Lake-Sumter State College

 1/539.8%Leesburg, FL

Lake-Sumter State College is located in Leesburg, Florida. LSSC offers an associate degree in general studies for students interested in transferring to a four-year university. Lake-Sumter has partnered with several Florida universities, and students who earn their AA from LSSC are guaranteed admission to the University of Central Florida. LSSC is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students interested in earning a pre-university degree.

LSCC also has career-oriented associate degree options and certificate programs. LSSC’s Associate in Science degree trains students for in-demand careers. At LSSC, students can earn an A.S. degree in business administration, computer information technology, criminal justice, early childhood education, and nursing. LSSC is known for its Performing Arts Series, which hosts six theatrical performances throughout the school year.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
23

Gulf Coast State College

 1/533.49%Panama City, FL

Gulf Coast State College is located in Panama City, Florida. GCSC is dedicated to providing students with a high-quality and practical education. The College offers an Associate in Art degree with 75 different transfer-tracks, and a range of Associate in Science degrees or technical certificates. GCSC also offers online courses and online degree programs.

At GCSC students can earn an Associate in Science degree in dental hygiene, health sciences, respiratory care, engineering technology, culinary management, hospitality, and tourism, among others. Students with an AA from GSCS can transfer to a four-year college to complete their undergraduate education. Because of its extensive AA and AS degree options, GCSC is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
24

Saint Johns River State College

 1/540.88%Palatka, FL

Saint Johns River State College is located in Palatka, Florida. At Saint Johns, students can choose from a range of associate degree and certificate programs. Students can begin their educational careers by enrolling in four-year track programs, or earn a career-oriented degree to prepare for immediate entry into the workforce.

The Associate in Arts degree is a general studies degree that guarantees students entry into one of Florida’s public universities. The Associate in Science degree prepares students for careers in their chosen fields. Saint John’s AS degree is divided into two areas. The first area includes specialized career training. The second area includes general education courses that provide students with a well-rounded education and enhanced employment opportunities. Saint Johns is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students seeking an interdisciplinary education.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile
25

City College – Altamonte Springs

 3/550%Altamonte Springs, FL

City College-Altamonte Springs is a private not-for-profit college located in Altamonte Springs, Florida. City College has five campuses and an online learning division. City College’s Altamonte Springs location boasts a library, computer lab, state of the art medical laboratory, and student lounge. City College’s mission is to provide students with high-quality training in their field of choice.

Students at Altamonte Springs can earn an Associate of Science degree in the following areas: health, broadcasting, business administration, criminal justice, nursing, emergency medical services, surgical technology, veterinary technology, and private investigation services. Students enrolled in CC’s private investigation program learn from seasoned professionals and receive hands-on experience. CC-Altamonte Springs is one of the best two-year colleges in Florida for students seeking specialized career training.

Tweet thisShare thisSchool Profile

If you’re thinking about applying to one of the best colleges in Florida, continuing reading to learn more about living in the Sunshine State.

Florida is famous for blue skies, surf and sun. The state covers 5,860 square miles (1,198 miles of coastline) and packs almost 20 million people into that small space. In fact, it’s the fourth most-populated state in the country.

Geographers divide Florida into four regions. These include the Gulf Coast and coastal plains (those beaches you’ve heard so much about). In the northern part of the state lie the hilly upland areas. Alligators and wildlife abound in the famously swampy Everglades. Finally, explore an island paradise in the Jimmy Buffet-approved Florida Keys.

Regional Spotlight: Gulf Coast and Coastal Plains

Regional Spotlight: Uplands

Regional Spotlight: Everglades

Regional Spotlight: Florida Keys

Residency

Florida’s stellar universities offer real opportunities for students. But the college and university system have stringent requirements for students that want resident status. It’s best for students to plan as soon as possible, even if they don’t intend to go to college for a while.

For Minors:

For minors, the first big determination is whether they are an independent or dependent student. The university makes its decision based on the student and parents’ tax returns. Other documentation may be needed, as no one piece is necessarily conclusive.

Students and their parents have to prove that they live in Florida for reasons beyond just attending school. To do that, the school may want proof they’ve made a life in the state. This includes documents like driver’s license and voter registration cards. It can also include proof of home ownership and proof of full-time employment.

The school bases its decision on the student and their parent or legal guardian living in the state for a year before seeking resident status.

For Adults:

Adults must live in Florida for reasons beyond just attending school. Proving this can involve documentation of a life outside education. The university may want home ownership papers. Government documents like a driver’s license or voter’s registration may also serve to prove residency. The school may also want to see proof of full-time employment. No single document is conclusive and the school is the final arbiter of its decision.