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The University of Florida is exploring options for creating a new graduate campus in Jacksonville. It would focus on programs in medicine, business, and engineering, according to UF administrators. The university is in discussions with the City of Jacksonville on creating the campus.
Mori Hosseini, chair of the UF Board of Trustees, said the goal is to support the region’s workforce needs in biomedical technology.
“When it is completed, this proposal would hold the key to keeping Florida’s brightest minds in Florida by providing them the skills they need to build promising careers,” Hosseini said.
Jacksonville’s mayor, Lenny Curry, said he will ask Jacksonville City Council to approve a three-year, $50 million commitment. UF and community leaders will seek an additional $50 million in private support.
Curry said Jacksonville has already pushed the boundaries when it comes to the city’s healthcare and technology sectors.
“To keep up with this growth, we must continue to invest in the infrastructure and talent pipelines that drive these industries,” Curry said. “Ensuring access to quality, skilled talent, right here in Jacksonville, is crucial to the health of our economy.”
The partnership will also work with education, business, medical and community leaders to determine academic needs and opportunities for the region’s workforce.
Dr. Ben Sasse, who on Monday started his job as president of the University of Florida, said both sides need to do more work on the plan. Still, he thinks there’s real potential for UF to add to Florida’s skilled workforce.
“The fact that we’re here (in Jacksonville). We want to grow. We want more partnerships in both healthcare and education is indisputable, and we’re really grateful for your partnership,” Sasse said.
UF has been working with West Palm Beach leaders since 2021 to build a campus in south Florida. It would provide professional degree programs in law, engineering, and business.