Mucho demand for UCF's free state med school
Top professors are fleeing state universities that have lost tens of millions in state funding, but it seems plenty of students -- 778, to be exact -- want one of 40 all-expenses paid slots in the fledgling state-funded med school at the University of Central Florida.
The Orlando college in just a few weeks has received that many applications for its fall 2009 inaugural class of 40. No wonder. UCF is the first medical school in the country to provide full scholarships for an entire class.
Students from every major Florida university applied, plus out-of-state students from universities including Yale, Harvard, Duke, Cornell, Columbia, Johns Hopkins, Ohio State, and Wake Forest, according to UCF officials.
Each of UCF's first 40 medical students will get a full four-year scholarship worth $160,000, to be covered with private donations the university has already collected.
The UCF med school's state money coffers, however, aren't so flush. UCF and FIU wanted a total of $18-million more for the upcoming budget year, but lawmakers gave each med school about $4-million less than they requested.