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Florida Gulf Coast University

Undergraduate School

Mailing Address
10501 FGCU Blvd. S.
Fort Myers, Florida 33965
(239) 590-1000
Email address
School Information
"The vision for the university was one that would address emerging higher education needs for the 21st century, including the use of technology in the learning/teaching process and multi-year contracts as an alternative to faculty tenure. The Board of Regents approved an agreement in May 1995 with the United Faculty of Florida allowing FGCU to offer a contract system for faculty." FGCU Has a student to faculty ratio of 22 to 1, with an average of 33 students in each class. FGCU has an enrollment of over 15,000 students, with 63 Undergraduate degrees, 26 Master's degrees, and 7 Doctoral degrees. There are 6 colleges in the university (Source:
General Information
Florida Gulf Coast University's professor of sociology Ted Thornhill has founded and become the first director of the newly created Center for Critical Race and Ethnic Studies at FGCU. "His research examines racist and antiracist policies and practices within organizations" (Source: After the first day of class, this class has received some backlash, and for this reason, FGCU campus police were posted in front of the class and continued to monitor the situation. No mandatory Critical Race Training sessions are yet required of students. However, the university has implemented mandatory diversity training for faculty and for staff at Counseling and Psychological Services. See developments below:

Actions Taken

Anti-Racism, Bias, and Diversity Training
  • CAPS staff attend training related to "anti-Black racism, addressing the unique mental health needs of Black individuals, combatting white supremacy, and providing culturally competent mental healthcare."
Curriculum Changes and Requirements
  • The Race and Ethnic Studies Minor requires students to take the "White Racism" and "Racism and Law Enforcement" courses. Students have the option to take a course titled "Critical Race Theory in Comm [sic]."
Program and Research Funding
  • FGCU has recently founded a Center for Critical Race and Ethnic Studies. The description of the center reads, "The Center for Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CCRES) advances its vision by drawing together in an intellectual community a multidisciplinary group of FGCU faculty and students committed to the critical study of race and ethnicity in the United States and globally. The CCRES promotes and supports research, dialogue, collaboration, and community engagement focused on advancing racial equity." The center intends on hosting faculty research and "Serve as a resource for local communities and organizations in 1) identifying racially inequitable policies and practices and, 2) designing and implementing policies and practices that are racially equitable."
  • In September 2020 the Counseling and Psychological Services Department (CAPS) outlined numerous steps to align with the BLM movement. Notably, these steps include hiring a "Diversity Specialist/Staff Clinician.
  • The school has created an Inclusion and Culture Change Committee in Summer of 2020.
  • CAPS had a Social Justice Book Club in Summer of 2020 centered on "White Fragility."
  • The university has provided resources to faculty in order to administer "Inclusive Teaching." These resources include sites such as "Effective Teaching Is Anti-Racist Teaching", handbooks, and recommended reading materials from other universities.
  • In the 2020 Florida Educational Equity Report for FGCU, the university outlined steps it was taking towards diversity goals. FGCU joined in the Collegiate Coaching Diversity Pledge in athletics to be "committing itself to including diverse candidates for head coaching vacancies in men's and women's basketball."
  • In the 2020 Florida Educational Equity Report, FGCU stated the university's mission "emphasizes innovative, student-centered teaching and learning, promotes and practices environmental sustainability, embraces diversity, nurtures community partnerships, values public service, encourages civic responsibility, and cultivates habits of lifelong learning and the discovery of new knowledge.”
  • The university stated that "Academic Affairs has emphasized equity for faculty matters." Additionally, the Associate Vice Provost highlighted "additional specific responsibilities to recruit and retain diverse faculty and has participated in initiatives including the McKnight Fellowship events to promote the opportunities at FGCU to minority candidates."
  • University Instructor Robert Garcia teaches a course titled "Themes in the Humanities: Introduction to Critical Race & Ethnic Studies." (HUM 2390)
  • On March 6, 2023, Eagle Media published an article titled "FGCU Faces Possible Funding Loss for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion after DeSantis’ Proposal," which states that "DeSantis’ proposal could result in changes to FGCU’s mission statement or staff working on matters related to DEI because the proposal would end any funding to support it."
  • FGCU hosted a three-part webinar series on the "role of Southwest Florida Businesses in combating racism."
  • The FGCU Library provides resources related to "Minority Health and the Health Sciences" which includes videos on implicit biases in the health care industry.
  • The university offers a minor in "Peace and Social Justice."
Symbolic Actions
  • FGCU school leaders released a statement to express their approach. President Mike Martin and Provost Jim Llorens' stated that at "great universities like FGCU, racism, bigotry and intolerance must be directly confronted."
Last updated October 19th, 2023
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