State's newest university gears up for first day of classes - FOX 13 News

State's newest university gears up for first day of classes

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LAKELAND (FOX 13) -

After a weekend of relaxing, it is going to be down to business -- actually science, technology, engineering and math -- at Florida Polytechnic, our state's newest university. Classes start Monday.

This is Ashley Eugene's first time living away from home.

"I thought it was going to be stressful and uncomfortable, and I would want to go back home," she said. "But I am actually liking it."

Friday, students were settling in, and milling around the so-called "commons," an area in the Innovation, Science and Technology Building.

The building has a soaring, rounded roofline with blinds that automatically open and close to let in just the right amount of natural light.

"It is inspirational," said Kaitlyn Triplett, who is 18 years old.

It has been a bumpy road for the university to get to this point. Once under the wing of the University of Florida, Florida Poly had to struggle to gain its independence.

But there's another issue that has to be dealt with: the school is not accredited, and can't be until the first students graduate in 2016.

The provost and other school officials say that is not a problem and will happen on time.

Joshua Pilkin, a student, agreed.

"I believe that (Governor) Rick Scott is not going to let this institution go down," he said.

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