Students outside talking

Parent FAQs


Frequently Asked Questions

The faculty, staff and students of Florida Southern College want you to know that we take your concerns seriously. To help answer some of your questions, we have prepared the following responses to our prospective parents’ most Frequently Asked Questions:

Is Florida Southern College the right fit?
As a parent, there is no more important question you can ask, because choosing the right college can make all the difference to your student’s happiness and success. At FSC, we take great pride in preparing students to make positive and important contributions to our world. To achieve this core mission, we are committed to: Fostering a scholarly environment where professors have outstanding records of achievement that support dynamic, personalized instruction; Promoting a student life culture that provides ample and meaningful opportunities for active learning, leadership, team building, and spiritual growth; Maintaining our exemplary scholar-athlete programs, which model the highest standards of NCAA Division II athletics.

When you visit our beautiful campus, you will find our students, faculty, and staff to be friendly and committed to enhancing our strong sense of community and institutional pride.

With an undergraduate enrollment of around 1700 students, we offer an enviable 13:1 student-faculty ratio. Small class size allows for greater personalized attention, and students soon find out that engaged, hands-on learning is a hallmark of the FSC experience. In fact, throughout the course of their education at Florida Southern, most students will participate in research with their professors, consider a study abroad option, and give back to the community through volunteer programs.

The Cornerstone, the College's social honor code, articulates the shared commitment of all students to maintain a community of respect, civility, and honor. Indeed, life outside the classroom is an integral part of the FSC experience, and our students are involved in a number of student initiatives ranging from outstanding Greek Life organizations, volunteer programs such as Habitat for Humanity, the Student Government Association, theatre and musical performance, athletics and intramural sports, and Campus Ministries.

What can you tell me about the faculty?

Your son or daughter will find that the faculty at Florida Southern is first and foremost dedicated to student success. Because of our low student to faculty ratio of 13:1, students enjoy personal connections with their professors and opportunities for academic collaborations that are simply not possible at larger colleges and universities.

Not only do our professors have an outstanding commitment to teaching, they are dedicated to dynamic, innovative, and pragmatic approaches to teaching that actively involve students in the learning process. We call this engaged learning. Our students experience it as learning by doing.

Our professors are highly credentialed and well respected for their scholarly and professional contributions to higher education and society. Currently, 88 percent of our faculty members hold the highest degrees in their respective fields, and many bring years of professional experience to the classroom.

What is the cost of tuition, room and board?

For the academic year 2011-12, the total cost for residential students is $34,920.

For a more detailed break-down, please see Tuition and Fees »

Can I afford it?
Florida Southern offers a life-changing education at an affordable price. That’s why the College is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as “one of America’s Best Values” and is designated as “one of America’s Best Buys” by Barron’s Best Buys in College Education.

To help make the cost of attending FSC affordable, the College provides financial aid to a large percentage of its students—indeed, 96 percent of our students receive financial assistance. This commitment to affordability is reflected in the more than $18 million awarded in financial aid packages for the 2010-11 academic year.

What if my son or daughter needs academic assistance?
Every college student needs help from time to time with an academic challenge. At FSC’s Office of Academic Support Services, no concern is too big or too small.

Academic Support programs and services are designed to help students make a smooth transition to college life and foster the development of life skills and habits to promote academic success. Students will find the staff to be friendly and available, and each student is treated as an individual worthy of highly personalized attention.

An array of programs, services and resources are available to students at Academic Support Services at no additional cost, including study skills and time management workshops; academic counseling; academic tutoring; and peer mentor relationships.

Will my student be safe?
Your student’s safety is our top priority. When you visit our beautiful residential campus situated on 100 self-contained acres overlooking Lake Hollingsworth, you’ll see why our campus boasts an unusually high safety record. Campus Safety personnel actively patrol the area 24 hours a day, and residence halls are equipped with a 24-hour card-access system and an alarmed exterior door system. The Lakeland Police Department, Fire Department and Regional Medical Center are all within a five minutes’ drive. Campus Safety provides a security escort service after sundown, and Security Escort Transmitters are available for a modest fee of $50 per year from the Campus Safety Office. Student programming offered on a regular basis through the Office of Campus Safety and the Office of Student Development reinforces the culture of safety on campus. To learn more, access the College’s up-to-date Safety Guide and Emergency Handbook.

What health and counseling services are available?
Whether a student has a cold or needs immediate medical attention, the Health Center offers a full array of services to assist students when illness or injury occurs. You’ll rest easier knowing that Registered Nurses are available or on call 24 hours a day and that the professional staff includes an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner who works in conjunction with a board-certified family practice physician. You can also be assured that emergency care is mere minutes away at the Lakeland Regional Medical Center.

Sometimes, students need emotional support as well, and our Personal Counseling Center professionals stand ready to help your student whenever they are needed. We know that College can present significant challenges to the developing young adult, and for this reason, we offer a full complement of counseling programs to assist students with personal issues or crises, relationship difficulties, and decision-making challenges to name a few.

Visit the Counseling Center on your campus visit. Once you meet our caring professionals, and you'll see why our students trust their knowledge and expertise.

What about wellness programs?
The College’s commitment to student wellness is second to none. Our premier facility, the Nina B. Hollis Wellness Center, boasts state-of-the-art equipment and space, an exemplary staff, and comprehensive programming to promote fitness and wellness including aquatics; yoga; pilates, personal training, intramural sports and outdoor recreation programs. Be sure to check out this extraordinary facility overlooking Lake Hollingsworth.

Do you have a Career Planning program?
FSC’s Career Center professionals are interested in your student’s career aspirations, as evidenced by the wonderful transitions our students are making upon graduation. The Center offers a myriad of assistance options, from choosing a major to identifying internship opportunities to preparing for interviews to finding that first professional job or gaining entry into graduate or professional school.

Currently, more than 90 percent of our recent graduates are employed or furthering their education at outstanding graduate and professional schools. Some employers of our students include: Bank of America; Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals; Enterprise Rent-A-Car; Florida Hospital; GEICO; Holland & Knight; Lakeland Regional Medical Center; Lockheed Martin; John Hancock; Peace Corps; Polk County Schools; Publix Super Markets; State of Florida; U.S. Army; U.S. Department of Environmental Protection; and Walt Disney World.

Recent graduates are also pursuing advanced degrees at the following prestigious institutions: Baylor University; Boston University; Columbia University; Duke University; Emory University; University of Florida; Vanderbilt University; and The College of William & Mary.

For a more comprehensive listing of employers and graduate/professional institutions where our students have placed, visit the FSC Career Center site.

Is there a pre-med program?
Yes, we do offer a pre-med curriculum, and we boast an enviable track record of admission to prestigious medical schools. Because of our low student to faculty ratio of 13:1, students are able to work side-by-side with faculty conducting publishable research, and student-faculty collaborative research opportunities are available during the summer months.

Florida Southern College also has an articulation agreement with the College of Medicine of the University of South Florida in Tampa to give priority admittance to FSC students who meet a series of rigorous academic requirements. This arrangement is a testament to the high caliber of pre-med students at Florida Southern and an acknowledgement of the College’s reputation for graduating students who seek to make significant, positive contributions to our world.

In addition to our medical school admission rate, we have an excellent acceptance rate to dental, pharmacy, and veterinary schools, as well as to osteopathic medical schools.

What about pre-law?
While there is not a pre-law major per se, we have a strong advising program to prepare students to obtain admission to law school. Any liberal arts major is great preparation for law school, as outstanding written and verbal communication skills, as well as critical analysis skills, are essential to success in any law program. Political science, economics, environmental studies, history, English, philosophy, communications and business are all popular majors among our aspiring law students.

We have a dedicated pre-law adviser who provides students with guidance on applying to law school and preparing for the LSAT (law school entrance exam), and who coordinates appointments for students with law school recruiters. Recent FSC graduates are pursuing law degrees at prestigious institutions such as Columbia University and the University of Florida.

Can my student bring a car to campus?
The College does not place restrictions on who may bring a car to campus. At the same time, we encourage you to have a discussion with your son or daughter about limiting the use of their car on campus. The Florida Southern community is committed to offering a rich variety of student life activities to keep students fully engaged on campus during the week and during weekends. Our students are active in Greek Life, the Student Government Association, clubs and organizations, theatre and musical performance, athletics and intramural sports, and Campus Ministries to name a few.

Walking to class is easy, as the campus is contained on 100 acres, with buildings that are connected by foot paths and covered walkways. This year, the College installed bicycle racks throughout campus, and students are encouraged to enjoy the natural beauty of the campus and its Frank Lloyd Wright structures by bike or on foot.

How can I be involved?
Dropping your child off at school, while bittersweet, can also be a richly rewarding experience. New Student Orientation is a memorable weekend of information sessions and activities for students and parents and includes opportunities for you to meet with your child’s orientation adviser, academic adviser, and resident adviser, as well as the dean of student development and other members of the student development team, faculty members, and the president.

This action-packed weekend culminates in an inspiring Convocation ceremony that serves to build a sense of pride, community, and responsibility among the members of the entering class. Many parents report bidding their children goodbye with a renewed sense of confidence in their chosen educational journey.

After the Fall semester is in full swing and students have had the opportunity to make a successful adjustment, the College hosts parents, siblings and other family members for three action-packed days on campus. Family Weekend provides a variety of options for you to experience the FSC culture and community while enjoying time with your son or daughter. All parents, upon their student's matriculation to Florida Southern, become members of the Family Association, which is guided by an executive board and members-at-large. The Association's activities include providing assistance in planning for New Student Orientation and Family Weekend. Many parents choose to contribute to the weekly on-line Parent Newsletter. Whatever your talents, FSC welcomes your contributions to making the Florida Southern experience a stellar one for our students.