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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Wanted: Florida Polytechnic's first trustees

The search is on for the Florida Polytechnic's charter board of trustees.

Florida's Board of Governors, which oversees the state university system, made the announcement Tuesday. It's a nationwide search and a rare opportunity, board members said.

"There are very complex and very real challenges for these charter members as they set a vision and the strategy to break the mold, meet the benchmarks and open the doors," Chairman Dean Colson said in a statement.

Complex indeed. Come July 1, the Lakeland campus will leave the University of South Florida's system and become independent. Gov. Rick Scott approved the split April 20.

As part of the deal, Florida Polytechnic must meet certain benchmarks established by the Board of Governors by Dec. 31, 2016. The Board had voted last year to allow the school to become independent only after meeting those benchmarks, including a minimum enrollment and accreditation, but the bill Scott signed allows the school to break off right away.

Like at other state universities,the Board of Governors doesn't get to make all of the appointments. Of 13 trustees, the board gets five slots. Scott will appoint six more for staggered five-year terms. The two remaining seats are reserved for the student body president and chairman of the school's faculty senate.

Applications are due May 31. More information here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 1, 2012 4:52pm]

    

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