Nova Southeastern University, commonly referred to as Nova, is a private, coeducational, nonsectarian, research university located in Broward County, Florida, United States, with its main campus in the town of Fort Lauderdale. The university is the eighth-largest not-for-profit private university in the nation. NSU operates eight Student Educational Centers in Florida, the largest being a 300 acres (120 ha) campus located approximately 24 miles (39 km) north of Downtown Miami.
The university was founded as the Nova University of Advanced Technology on a former Naval Outlying Landing Field built during World War II. The university first offered graduate degrees in the physical and social sciences.Leo Goodwin, Sr. left a $16 million bequest to the university in 1971 which funded its expansion throughout the 1970s and 1980s. In 1994, the university merged with the Southeastern University of the Health Sciences and assumed its current name.
NSU currently consists of 18 colleges and schools offering over 175 programs of study with more than 250 majors. The university offers professional degrees in law, business, osteopathic medicine, allied health, pharmacy, dentistry, optometry, and nursing. Nova Southeastern enrolled 28,457 students in the 2011-2012 academic year and has produced over 145,000 alumni.
In 2008, the middle 50% of SAT scores submitted by the incoming freshman class was between 1010 and 1210 on the traditional SAT scale. With the addition of the writing section on the new SAT, the middle 50% of scores was between 1400 and 1700. The freshmen acceptance rate for the first 2011 semester was 50%. For the fall of 2011, 2,818 prospective first-time, first-year undergraduate students applied and 1,433 were accepted. Out of the 59 colleges and universities in Florida Nova Southeastern's 45% acceptance rate makes NSU the fourth-most selective private university in the state and the sixth-most selective university in Florida overall.
NSU is classified as a high research and community engaged university by the Carnegie Foundation, and is a first-tier research university as designated by the Florida Legislature. The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and also has numerous additional specialized accreditations for its colleges and programs.
The NSU Sharks compete in the NCAA Division II Sunshine State Conference in seventeen intercollegiate athletic programs.
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