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Florida State’s new freshman class is one of biggest, brightest ever

FSU welcomes back about 42,000 students for the 2017 fall semester. (L to R) Senior Corey Wheeler, freshman Giovanna Garcia, freshman Justin Marquez, junior Danisha Carrasco, sophomore Tabisha Raymond, freshman Carson Tappan and senior Maria Montano are excited for the start of classes Monday, Aug. 28.
FSU welcomes back about 42,000 students for the 2017 fall semester. (L to R) Senior Corey Wheeler, freshman Giovanna Garcia, freshman Justin Marquez, junior Danisha Carrasco, sophomore Tabisha Raymond, freshman Carson Tappan and senior Maria Montano are excited for the start of classes Monday, Aug. 28.

Florida State University will welcome about 42,000 students — including what is expected to be one of the largest incoming freshman classes in university history — as classes begin for the 2017-2018 academic year Monday, Aug. 28.

FSU anticipates about 300 more incoming freshmen than last year, an increase in yield following a record number of applications for admission to the 2017 summer and fall semesters. The total number of applications — 42,325 — was a 16 percent jump over last year.

The incoming freshman class of about 6,500 students is expected to be the most academically talented cohorts in FSU history.

“We’re excited to welcome another outstanding group of freshmen to Florida State,” said President John Thrasher. “This uptick in freshman enrollment means more and more students are selecting Florida State as their top choice. It’s a testament to FSU’s rising academic reputation.”

Of those freshmen who were accepted into the university for the summer and fall semesters:

  • The average high school grade point average was 4.1 with an average ACT composite score of 29.
  • This year’s incoming freshman class includes students from 64 Florida counties, 45 states, the District of Columbia and 21 nations. After Florida, the states with the most new accepted freshmen are Georgia, New Jersey, New York and Illinois.
  • Women make up 59.8 percent of the new freshman class, while 40.2 percent students are male.
  • The top five majors selected by this year’s admitted freshman class are: biological science, pre-health professions, business, engineering and psychology.

“There is a growing demand for a Florida State education,” said Sally McRorie, provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs. “Students around the state and the country recognize that FSU is a special place. We have become an increasingly popular destination for students declaring STEM majors, and we continue to attract the most talented students to our world-class arts and humanities programs.”

Other highlights of the new academic year include:

  • Twenty-five of this year’s most academically gifted freshmen are part of the university’s fourth class of Presidential Scholars. This merit-based scholarship program, established in 2014, is for freshmen who have been accepted into the university’s Honors Program. It provides a $4,800 annual scholarship for four years, and out-of-state tuition is waived for non-Floridians. Over their four years, the Presidential Scholars engage in programs to help them become transformational leaders in their communities.
  • The freshman class also includes 416 students accepted through the Center for Academic Retention and Enhancement (CARE). The year-round program, which includes a seven-week Summer Bridge Program, provides traditionally underrepresented and first-generation students with enhanced academic support. CARE received almost 5,000 applications for just over 400 coveted spots in this year’s cohort.
  • The new Jim Moran School of Entrepreneurship welcomes its first class of 80 juniors this fall. They can choose between two majors: commercial or social entrepreneurship. This first class has 60 students in commercial entrepreneurship and 20 in social entrepreneurship.
  • Florida State’s total enrollment includes nearly 8,000 students pursuing a graduate or professional degree, including 40 students in the College of Medicine’s new physician assistant program. The School of Physician Assistant Practice is a 27-month program designed to follow Florida State’s unique community-based approach to medical education and awards graduates with a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Practice.
  • There are two new residence halls this fall — Magnolia and Azalea — providing contemporary on-campus housing opportunities for more than 900 students. Azalea Hall features a new concept that no other FSU residence hall has — its own 24,000-square-foot dining area, “1851.” Located on the ground floor, 1851 offers a variety of micro-dining options for students, faculty, staff and the community.