Gannon breaks boundaries with opening of Florida campus

Gannon University made a boundary breaking announcement to its family at 10 a.m. Thursday in the Yehl Ballroom during a historic press conference. President Keith Taylor, Ph.D., announced to staff, faculty and students the opening of a Florida campus.

The school was granted Florida State Education Commission approval and Gannon intends to offer graduate Health Professional programs beginning in the summer of 2015, Taylor said.

“This is a big day for Gannon,” Taylor said. “This is, as are all things we do here, this is about our students and ensuring their success and access to exceptional education.”

This campus’s west coast is considered a prime site for delivering several professional graduate programs, Taylor said. The Ruskin Florida Gannon University campus is located in the growing county of Hillsborough.

“Gannon is a university that is on the move and continuing to grow,” Taylor said. “With our highest enrollment of 23 years, Gannon’s population has reached 4,410 students and this new campus is going to help us to continue to grow.

This school will allow Gannon to meet the growing needs of professional education and quality health care, Taylor said. He said the initiative speaks to the academic, financial and organizational health of Gannon and our new campus – $60 million has been invested over the past six years and Gannon plans to devote another $20-$25 million within the next two to three years.

“We want to work with our neighbors to transform our Erie downtown home,” Taylor said.  “Forever, Erie will be the heart of this university. It is truly a historic and exciting time to be a part of the Gannon family. We are privileged to be part of our great city and of our region for so many years and we look forward to many more successful years to come.”

Provost and vice president of academic affairs, Carolynn Masters, Ph.D., RN, said this is a major unfolding in Gannon’s history; the expanding of Gannon’s footprint beyond its region to a school in Ruskin is unbelievable.

“Over the past several months, we have seen and experienced considerable and exciting growth and change,” Masters said. “There has been a lot of change at Gannon; new academic programs, new teaching modalities and deliberating methods, new and amazing facilities.

All necessary to help our students and graduates successfully meet the challenges of today’s world. Yet we, Gannon, remain the same, we are still the same. We are committed to our mission, committed to academic excellence, committed to the community and committed to preparing socially responsible citizens.”

It doesn’t matter where, Erie, Ruskin, it’s who Gannon is. Its focus has been, always will be and continues to be focused on the student providing the highest quality education and experience, Masters said.

“Today we share with you the good news which is a combination of two years of hard work and dedication,” Masters said.

The Ruskin campus is located is located halfway between Tampa and Bradenton, Fla., and will offer Gannon a welcoming community of partners – one that truly supports its mission, Masters said.

 

BECKY HILKER

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