Record-breaking freshman class set to start fall semester

FSU's new freshman class is the largest in university history. From left to right: Rain Bellamy, Jack Folwell, Daniel Siegel, Lance Hendrickson, Ryan The, Isabella Eaton, Nicky Croom. (FSU Photography Services)
FSU's new freshman class is the largest in university history. From left to right: Rain Bellamy, Jack Folwell, Daniel Siegel, Lance Hendrickson, Ryan The, Isabella Eaton, Nicky Croom. (FSU Photography Services)

About 7,200 first-year students and a new president will be among the fresh faces on Florida State University’s campus as fall classes begin Monday, Aug. 23.

President Richard McCullough, who starts his second week as FSU’s 16th president Monday, is excited to join the largest freshman class in the university’s history and a record number of graduate students in becoming a part of the Florida State family.

“I’m thrilled to start my tenure at the beginning of a new academic year and to welcome a very impressive freshman class,” McCullough said. “This is not only the biggest freshman class but one of the brightest, and I can’t wait to see the contributions these students will make to our university community.”

More than 66,000 first-year students applied for admission to FSU for the summer and fall 2021 semesters. Of those first-year students who were accepted into the university for the summer and fall semesters:

  • The average high school grade point average was 4.3 with an average 1310 total SAT score and ACT composite score of 29.
  • The cohort includes students from 66 Florida counties and, all 50 states and the District of Columbia, and 49 countries. After Florida, the states with the most accepted freshmen are Georgia, New York, New Jersey, Illinois and Texas.
  • Women make up 60 percent of the new freshman class, while 40 percent of the students are male.
  • The top five majors selected are biological science, business, engineering, psychology and exploratory/undecided.

For the second consecutive year, FSU received more than 14,000 graduate school applications for the fall term — an 83 percent increase in applications since Fall 2017. This year’s graduate student cohort is expected to be FSU’s largest, exceeding last year’s record enrollment of nearly 9,700 graduate students.

Other notable items for the upcoming academic year include:

  • Welcome FSU,” a week of engaging events to promote student involvement and inclusion on campus, will offer in-person events while following precautions to help ensure a safe and low-risk recruitment, move-in process and semester. Activities run through Aug. 27.
  • Three new initiatives from the Center for Academic Retention and Enhancement (CARE), which operates to provide equity and access to traditionally underrepresented students. The FGEN Noles Network will provide new outreach and support to first-generation students, Project Beyond Limits will serve students with limited incomes/Pell grants, and NextGen Noles will provide support for students with dependents. These efforts combined will effectively double the number of students served by CARE at FSU.
  • Expanded Engage 100 program offerings to include new outreach and support for out-of-state students and students living off-campus during their first year. Engage 100 is a program unique to FSU that helps first-year students transition to the university.
  • An expanded Learning Assistants program that will enrich student learning and achievement, especially in FSU’s gateway/first-year courses. LAs are undergraduates who have successfully completed a course and are subsequently selected by faculty to work with them in the classroom, helping current students engage with course material for better understanding.
  • The implementation of the High School AA Mentorship program to help students who arrive at FSU with 60+ credits. The program enables first year students with an AA degree to connect with upperclassmen who have also earned an AA degree in high school.

Florida State University continues to offer easily accessible on-campus COVID-19 testing and vaccination clinics at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center. For more information, visit

  • Students are expected to wear a face covering or mask when inside any FSU facility to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, even if they are fully vaccinated.
  • Students who are not already fully vaccinated can walk into one of FSU’s free COVID-19 vaccination clinics or make an appointment at
  • Fully vaccinated students can register for Stay Healthy FSU: Your Shot to Win drawing now through Oct. 1 to win tuition and fee assistance or other valuable prizes. Enter Your Shot to Win here!