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USF Places Second In State's Performance-Based Rankings

Carl Lisciandrello
WUSF Public Media
USF's 94 points in the 2021 performance-based funding metrics only trailed Florida International University among the state's 12 public universities.

The scores measure each school's performance in 10 student success-based metrics, including four-year graduation rate, degrees awarded, and median wages of graduates.

For the second year in a row, the University of South Florida scored 94 points in the state's performance-based funding metrics.

The State University System released its rankings Wednesday at the Board of Governors' meeting in St. Petersburg.

The scores measure each school's performance in 10 student success-based metrics, including four-year graduation rate, degrees awarded, and median wages of graduates.

USF earned perfect 10 scores in five categories:

  • Four-year graduation rate
  • Median wages of graduates who earned a bachelor’s degree
  • Bachelor's degrees awarded in areas of strategic emphasis
  • Graduate degrees awarded in areas of strategic emphasis
  • Net tuition and fees per 120 credit hours

USF also picked up the maximum five points in the ranking's newest metric: two-year graduation rate for transfer students from the Florida College System.

Among the state's 12 public universities, USF's 94 points only trailed Florida International University, which scored 97, up from 88 a year ago.

Read the scores here.

The performance includes USF's Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Sarasota-Manatee campuses.

“The University of South Florida is proud to be recognized for sustaining top scores in our state’s critical performance metrics, especially given the unprecedented challenges our university community successfully navigated throughout the global pandemic,” USF President Steven Currall said.

“USF’s performance reflects our commitment — year after year — to position our students for lifelong success, beginning with graduating on time, with little debt, and skilled for high-wage, high-demand jobs in our state.”

Under the state's performance-based funding allocation for 2021-22, USF will receive just over $73 million — $34.5 million in state contributions and $38.5 million the school contributed to the state pool.

The total trailed only the state's two other preeminent universities, the University of Florida ($106 million) and Florida State University ($86.7 million).

Florida Board of Governors
Florida Board of Governors Performance-Based Funding Allocation, 2021-22

The universities will split a pot of $560 million in performance-based funding. That's a combination of what the state has invested and member schools' contributions.

The two other universities in the area made news for different reasons:

Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland was ranked for the first time, scoring 83 points, placing in a tie for seventh place.

And New College of Florida finished at the bottom of the rankings, as the Sarasota school's score dropped from 87 last year to 64 this year.

While New College picked up the maximum 10 points in five categories, it saw the percentage of bachelor's graduates employed and/or continuing their education one year after graduation drop almost 14% to 51.4%. That earned the school zero points in that category.

Mark Schreiner is the assistant news director and intern coordinator for WUSF News.
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