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Santa Fe College in Gainesville Helps Provide Area Workforce

Santa Fe College offers several programs and works with University of Florida to provide student services and startup success.

By John Fuller on September 25, 2014

Gainesville, FL
Gainesville / Courtesy of Aaron Daye/Santa Fe College

David Houder says Santa Fe College is truly the community’s college, where many of its 24,000 students can transition easily “down the road” to the University of Florida to complete their junior and senior years.

“We also prepare our students for skilled technical careers with top employers throughout the Gainesville region,” says Houder, Santa Fe College director of communications. “We’ve set up advisory boards of industry leaders who tell us what kinds of skills they’re looking for in future employees.”

SF partners with several area companies that craft specific technical-training programs.

“For example, air conditioner manufacturing giant Daikin has constructed a training center on campus,” Houder says. “Students learn all aspects of the Daikin business, including how to customize temperatures to eliminate wasteful air conditioner usage in office, dorm rooms and warehouses.”

SF offers certificate programs, two-year degrees and a handful of 2+2 four-year degrees in several high-demand fields that include health sciences, biotechnology, clinical laboratory science, business administration and digital media.

“The college also prides itself on being military friendly, working with armed services personnel to help them with career paths once their terms of duty are over,” Houder says.

Jack Hanna on Board

SF also has a zoo animal technology program set in a 10-acre naturally wooded environment, with a collection of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians.

“Famed American zookeeper Jack Hanna is on the Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo board,” Houder says. “It’s an interesting program, with students getting experience in all aspects of wild animal care, including habitat construction, zoo maintenance and working with the public.”

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