Florida Polytechnic aims to name campus after powerful former state senator
Florida Polytechnic University, created three years ago, is trying to name its campus after the powerful state legislator from Polk County who was instrumental in using the state budget process to create the campus.
The Lakeland school’s board of trustees announced Wednesday they had voted to name the campus the John David “JD” Alexander Campus after former state Senator JD Alexander, R-Lake Wales, who was instrumental in funding the school and leading the controversial campaign to split it from the USF system in 2012. The naming decision must still be approved by the Florida Polytechnic University Foundation Board to become official.
"Senator Alexander recognized the need for a new university to advance STEM education and ensure the lasting strength of Florida's economy. For his efforts toward realizing that vision, he deserves lasting recognition,” said board chairman Mark Bostick. “We are proud to name the campus of Florida Polytechnic University in his honor.”
Alexander, then the Senate’s Appropriations chairman, was aggressive in pushing legislation toward creating the school in 2012. He served four years in the Florida House and 10 years in the Florida Senate.
The decision to name Florida Poly’s campus after Senator Alexander was made unanimously by the school’s board of trustees.
“It is my hope that when students and faculty see Senator Alexander's name on our campus, they will remember and embrace those values as they too set out to shape our world as leaders and entrepreneurs,” Florida Poly President Dr. Randy K. Avent said.