USF President: Record Research Grants at $428M, New Initiatives for Coming Year

President Judy Genshaft’s Fall Address Features Highlights, Look Ahead

The President lauded the USF System’s students, faculty and staff for their hard work, dedication and playing an important role in a university system poised for success in a challenging era.  Photo by Aimee Blodgett

TAMPA, Fla. (Sept. 24, 2014) – The University of South Florida System set a new record for research grants and contracts in the last academic year, with more than $428 million earned, President Judy Genshaft announced in her annual Fall Address to the university community Wednesday.


The Unstoppable campaigned raised $113 million dollars.

The record research total came in a year that also saw a single-year record $113 million raised by the USF Foundation in the Unstoppable campaign.  The President also announced two new key initiatives for USF: the Florida Consortium of Metropolitan Research Universities which unites USF with the University of Central Florida and Florida International University in a new student success initiative and the construction of a 2,000-bed student village on the Tampa campus.


“The success we celebrate today is success that each of you have earned through your dedication, your vision, your commitment, your ability to accept risk in the process of discovery and innovation; and your ability to rise to meet challenges,” President Genshaft told a capacity crowd at the Oval Theater in the Marshall Student Center. “Quite simply, the USF System is thriving like never before.”


The President’s Fall Address is an annual tradition. Wednesday’s event marked President Genshaft’s 14th address and built on the theme of USF’s mission, vision and values as a public research institution.


The research grants and contracts totaling $428,257,788 was nearly a $15 million increase over 2012-13.


Last year, USF Research and Innovation also set a new record with 113 new patents; 91 new licenses and options executed, and 11 new startup companies. The new Student Innovation Incubator also has become home to 24 student projects and scores more students are eager to join.


In addition to research records, the President focused on student success, faculty achievement and the USF System’s vibrant entrepreneurial culture.


The President highlighted a recent report from the Center for American Progress in Washington that highlighted USF’s academic support initiatives and rising graduation rate as a leading example of universities promoting student access and success.


Partnerships also were a continuing theme of USF’s efforts to leverage resources and its academic and research capabilities.


Joining with UCF and FIU, the USF System will be asking state lawmakers for additional appropriations for a new effort to drive Florida’s workforce development in Florida’s critical urban areas.


These three universities alone produce 48 percent of the college graduates in the State University System and 44 percent of the STEM degrees. In addition, our three institutions are home to 60 percent of the state’s African-American and Hispanic students.

“As part of this new partnership, our three universities have been working closely together to share best practices, policies and programs to efficiently increase the number of graduates in high-demand areas and maximize career development opportunities,” President Genshaft said.


“We have already begun developing a database for sharing internship and job opportunities in Tampa Bay, Miami and Orlando. We are also looking to share predictive analytics technology so that our students will benefit from targeted support at the moment they need it.”

The initiative projects the three universities collectively can increase the number of baccalaureate degrees awarded by our institutions by 12 percent and increase six-year graduation rates by 4 percentage points. It also projects the partnership will increase the number of graduates employed in Florida by 3 percentage points and increase salaries of graduates by 10 percent by 2016.


Another partnership cited by the president is a new public-private venture on campus that will replace more than 1,000 beds of outdated housing in the oldest student housing facilities on campus, located between the Marshall Student Center and Fletcher Avenue. A new campus village that will be home to 2,000 students and feature retail outlets is preliminarily scheduled for completion in 2017.


The President lauded the USF System’s students, faculty and staff for their hard work, dedication and playing an important role in a university system poised for success in a challenging era.


“I have always believed that public research universities hold a special responsibility in our nation - and even more so for universities such as USF, where our location in the 18th largest metropolitan area in the United States positions us as an engine of economic growth, a provider of vital healthcare and the instrument by which education becomes empowerment,” the President said.

The full text of the President's address can be seen here.