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  • Medical Marijuana Licenses Bring Concerns and Joy 1, November24, 2015
    5 growers across Florida are gearing up for the first legal marijuana in the states history. The five licenses were awarded yesterday, and as Mike Vasilinda tells us, it will still be the middle of next year before patients see the first products. Lifelong nurseryman George Hackney was awarded one of five licenses to grow […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • AAA says Be Safe, Not Sorry 1, November24, 2015
    More than two million Floridians are expected to hit the roads over the Thanksgiving weekend. According to Triple A motor clubs, It is the busiest holiday travel weekend since 2008, and the auto club says the traffic is going be bad, there’s nothing you can do about it, so relax. “You can expect very buy […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Rick Scott Proposes 79.3 Billion State Budget with Potentially Higher Property Taxes 1, November23, 2015
    Governor Rick Scott is proposing a record state spending plan that cuts taxes by a billion dollars and boosts education spending. But as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the increase in school spending is coming from local property taxes, not state coffers. Governor Rick Scott chose a Jacksonville small company as the back drop for his […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Fantasy Sports Rules 1, November20, 2015
    Mounting legal issues have daily fantasy sports websites like draftkings and fanduel fighting legal battles in states like New York and Massachusetts, but as Matt Galka tells us, Florida legislators are scrambling to keep it legal here. Nevada says its gambling. New York says they can’t operate in the their state.  But daily fantasy sports […]
    Matt Galka
  • FSU One Year Later: A Quiet Anniversary 1, November20, 2015
    Today marks the one year anniversary of a shooting on the campus of Florida State University. Three students were injured. One critically. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, the university wasn’t taking any chances today. Two marked police vehicles were prominent outside Strozier Library. When asked, University officials said it was to give students peace of […]
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  • FSU One Year Later: Paralyzed Victim Still Recovering 1, November20, 2015
    Just after midnight tonight (Thur)marks the one year anniversary of an on campus shooting. 22 year old FSU engineering student Ronny Ahmed was paralyzed from the waist down last November. As Mike Vasilinda tells us the  now wheelchair bound student hasn’t let his injuries keep him from moving forward. Ronny Ahmed was pulling an all […]
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  • Guns on Campus Bill Clears Final House Committee 1, November19, 2015
    Friday marks one year since a gunman opened fire at Florida State’s library, and lawmakers are using the chaotic scene as a jumping off point for controversial legislation. As Matt Galka tells us, the bill to allow concealed carry on college campuses continued to move through one legislative chamber. There’s no lack of passion on […]
    Matt Galka
  • FSU One Year Later: Victims Still Trying to Heal 1, November18, 2015
    Friday marks the one year anniversary of the shooting at the FSU Strozier library that injured three. Today, Mike Vasilinda has the story of how two people who could have died next to each other that day last year are handling the fact they survived. Nathan Scott can still be found sitting behind the same […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Healthcare for Immigrant Children 1, November18, 2015
    Almost four hundred thousand children don’t have access to quality health coverage here in the state, an alarming number. As Matt Galka tells us, lawmakers are trying to cut into that number with a bill that would focus on children of legal immigrants who desperately need health care. Kids whose parents are legal immigrants are […]
    Matt Galka
  • GOP Lawmakers Seek Immigration Changes, Penalties 1, November17, 2015
    Five GOP lawmakers are behind a series of three bills to change immigration policy. One would make it a crime for someone who has been ordered deported to be in the state, another would remove lawsuit protections, known as sovereign immunity, for so called sanctuary cities that protect those here illegally, and a third would […]
    Mike Vasilinda

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Online State University

January 7th, 2013 by Anna Laura Rehwinkel

Florida leads the nation in online education. Four out of every 10 Florida college students have taken at least one online course. There are 700 degrees programs available entirely online and now, as Whitney Ray tells us, there’s a push in Tallahassee to create a state university existing completely in cyberspace.

This laptop is the only tool FSU Freshman Seth Russell needs to complete one of his main courses this semester.

“Having an online class frees up a lot of time for other classes,” said Russell.

For the second consecutive semester Seth is taking an online class. It allows him to learn from home at his own leisure.

“It’s really convenient, just pull up my laptop. I don’t have to walk to class,” said Russell.

Florida leads the way offering more than 700 degrees online and thousands of classes.

The University System Board of Governors is exploring the creation of a state university existing completely in cyberspace.

“It’s not about keeping everybody online it’s about getting the state in a position to have the best online modality experience,” said Robert Lytle with Parthenon Group.

The board hired a research group, which priced the creation of an online state university at 70 million dollars.

And even though there’s a hefty upfront cost, in the long run the move could save the state and students money.

Ed Moore, the president of Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida, says how much savings depends on the quality of the product offered.

“It depends on the institution. It depends on the degree program. It depends on the market. A lot of it is market driven,” said Moore.

Moore is against the state creating a new online university. He says creating an oversight board would be quicker and cheaper.

“My mantra is to use the assets that Florida already has first and then figure out what else we need,” said Moore.

The state legislature will also review the options when it convenes in March. Creating a stand alone state university is just one of four options being considered. The state could appoint one university to take the lead on online, encourage collaboration among the schools or just focus on improving online course at all Florida colleges.

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