Florida Atlantic University, also referred to as FAU or Florida Atlantic, is a public university located in Boca Raton, Florida with six satellite campuses located in the Florida cities of Dania Beach, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Jupiter, Port St. Lucie, and in Fort Pierce at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution. Florida Atlantic serves a seven-county region that has a populace of more than three million people and spans more than 100 miles (160 km) of Florida's eastern coastline.
Florida Atlantic opened in 1964 as the first public university in southeast Florida and the first university in the nation to offer only upper-division and graduate level courses. Although initial enrollment was only 867 students, this number increased in 1984 when the university admitted its first lower-division undergraduate students. As of 2011, enrollment has grown to over 29,000 students representing 140 countries, 50 states and the District of Columbia. Since its inception, Florida Atlantic has awarded more than 110,000 degrees to nearly 105,000 alumni worldwide.
In recent years Florida Atlantic has undertaken an effort to increase its academic and research standings while also evolving into a more traditional university. The university has raised admissions standards, increased research funding, built new facilities, and established notable partnerships with major research institutions. The efforts have resulted in not only an increase in the university's academic profile, but also the elevation of the football team to Division I competition status, the on-campus stadium, more on-campus housing, and the establishment of its own College of Medicine in 2010.
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