University of Florida

For the Gator Good

The University of Florida is a comprehensive learning institution built on a land-grant foundation. We are the Gator Nation, a diverse community dedicated to excellence in education and research and shaping a better future for Florida, the nation, and the world.


The University’s mission is to enable students to lead and influence the next generation and beyond for economic, cultural, and societal benefit by striving to offer broad-based, inclusive public education, leading research, and public service. The fusion of these three endeavors stimulates a remarkable intellectual vitality and generates a synthesis that represents the University’s greatest strength.

Education is a fundamental purpose of the University at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Research and scholarship are integral to the education process and to the expansion of our understanding of the natural world, the intellect, and the senses. Service reflects the University’s obligation to share the benefits of its research and knowledge for the public good.

These three interlocking elements span all academic disciplines and represent the University’s commitment to lead and serve by pursuing and disseminating new knowledge while building upon the experiences of the past. The University of Florida aspires to advance by strengthening the human condition and improving the quality of life.


The University of Florida, the State’s oldest university, traces its beginning of rich history to 1853, when the state-funded East Florida Seminary acquired the Kingsbury Academy in Ocala. After the end of the Civil War, the institution relocated to Gainesville, ultimately consolidated with the State’s land grant Florida Agricultural College and was renamed the University of Florida in 1906. At the time, the University was an all-male institution with only 102 students.

Until 1947, the University of Florida was one of only three State universities, along with the Florida State College for Women (now Florida State University) and Florida A&M University. Women attended as early as 1916, and the student body grew to 601 women and 8,177 men when the Legislature removed all barriers for female enrollment in 1947.

Today, the University is one of the largest in the nation, boasting an enrollment of more than 56,000 students. The campus consists of 2,000 acres and more than 900 buildings, including the first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum-certified building in the state of Florida. The University is comprised of 16 colleges, offers almost 100 bachelor programs and over 200 masters, doctoral, and professional programs. The University’s programs and facilities span more than 180 locations around the State and the globe.


The University faculty, which numbers over 6,000, has over 54 Eminent Scholar Chairs and 45 elections to the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine or to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Present and past faculty include Pulitzer Prize winners, a pioneer in aviation engineering, a leading scholar on econometrics, three winners of NASA’s top award for research, one of the four charter members of the Solar Hall of Fame, and a winner of the Smithsonian Institution’s award for conservation.

From pharmacy and public relations to pain mitigation and materials engineering, the University of Florida is a recognized leader in a wide variety of specialties and areas. University researchers and scientists have made significant developments and discoveries in many fields, including astronomy, microbiology, metallurgy, and medical technology.


The University of Florida is a world leader in research, contributing significantly to nearly every field of endeavor. Since 1985, the University of Florida has been a member of the Association of American Universities, which is comprised of 65 leading research universities in the United States and Canada. To date, the University of Florida is the only member university located in Florida.

University researchers have pioneered new therapies and better treatments in the fights against aging and disease. They have developed renewable energy sources that offer great promise in reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, as well as engineered healthier foods, developed more energy-efficient and sustainable construction techniques, and established better ways to protect the environment.

Through the years of research, University of Florida scientists, inventors, engineers, and researchers have developed products and practices that have been distributed and applied with an international reach, improving the lives of millions of people in Florida and around the world.


The University of Florida’s freshman retention rate of 96 percent speaks to the outstanding quality of the University’s entire academic experience. Fall 2019 figures indicate an enrollment of over 56,000 students, almost 80 percent of whom are from Florida. Almost every state in the nation is represented in the University of Florida student body, and the University has a large international enrollment, with over 4,600 international students representing more than 130 countries.

Sixty-seven percent of enrolled students are degreeseeking undergraduates, 21 percent are graduate students and seven percent are in a professional degree program, with the remaining five percent consisting of unclassified or non-degree seeking undergraduates.

University of Florida students also receive many opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities. There are more than 900 student organizations on campus.

The University of Florida is ranked 6th (tied) among public colleges and universities in the U.S. News Best Colleges (2021 ed.) and ranks 2nd in Kiplinger’s "Best Public College Values" (2019) and 10th in Forbes "Best Value Public Colleges" (2019). Additionally, UF is ranked 6th in Washington Monthly National Universities public ranking (2020), 11th in the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education U.S. public ranking (2021 ed.), 8th in Money Magazine Best Colleges in America Ranked by Value public ranking (2020), and No. 3 in the Milken Institute’s ranking of Best Universities for Technology Transfer (2017). The University’s consistent ranking among the nation’s top universities is a result of the commitment to provide the highest quality education at the best value.