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Encyclopedia > University of South Florida St. Petersburg

University of South Florida

University of South Florida Seal

Motto "Truth and Wisdom"
Established 1956
First classes 1960
School type Public university
Current President Judy Genshaft
Location Tampa, Florida, USA
Enrollment 41,571
Full-time Faculty 2,201
Faculty to Student Ratio 22.9:1
Mascot Rocky the Bull
Newspaper The Oracle
Homepage www.usf.edu

The University of South Florida, or USF, is a public university located in Tampa, Florida, with branch campuses in St. Petersburg, Sarasota and Lakeland. The main campus is located in the extreme northern part of Tampa, near the town of Temple Terrace, and is in close proximity to the Museum of Science and Industry as well as Busch Gardens.

The university is the third largest in the southeastern United States (after the University of Florida and the University of Central Florida), with a fall 2004 enrollment of 41,571. [1] (http://www.usf.edu/ataglance.html)

USF's mascot is the Bull, while its colors are green and gold. They participate in NCAA's Division I-A sports as a member of Conference USA; in 2005, USF will move to the Big East.

USF is currently the national headquarters for Phi Alpha Theta, a history honor society. The university's current president is Judy Genshaft.



Rocky the Bull, USF's mascot.
Rocky the Bull, USF's mascot.

USF was founded in 1956, though it wasn't even named until the next year and classes didn't commence until 1960. Former US Representative Sam Gibbons was instrumental in the school's creation when he was a state representative and is considered by many to essentially be the school's founder. It was built on the site of Henderson Air Field, a WWII airstrip.

The university first grew under the leadership of John Allen, who was the president from 1960 until 1970. During this time, the university expanded rapidly, due in part to the first graduate degree programs commencing in 1964. However, growing student unrest pressured Allen to resign from his post; he had traditionally been very firm in punishing protesters in a time of general unrest throughout the nation.

USF emerged as a major research institution during the 1990's, under the presidency of Betty Castor, and is currently considered one of the top universities in Florida. In addition to a heightened emphasis on research and academia, the university played its first football game in 1997, with its marching band forming in 1999.

Its reputation was tarnished under Castor's successor, Judy Genshaft, by the controversy surrounding Professor Sami Al-Arian. Al-Arian's alleged connections to Palestinian terrorist groups brought national media attention to USF following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

The school's newspaper is named The Oracle, which was first published on September 6, 1966. The newspaper has been redesigned many times since then; in 1966 the paper was published once a week, today The Oracle is published five times a week.

Famous students


The USF Sun Dome, where many sporting and live entertainment events are held.
Beta Hall, the largest co-ed traditional-style dormitory on the Tampa campus.

Former students

External links

  • Official website (http://www.usf.edu/)
  • Official athletics website (http://www.gousfbulls.com/)

Conference USA
ECU | Houston | Memphis | Southern Miss | Tulane | UAB
  Leaving in July 2005: Army | Charlotte | Cincinnati | DePaul | Louisville  
Marquette | Saint Louis | TCU | USF
Joining in July 2005: Marshall | Rice | SMU | Tulsa | UCF | UTEP

Big East Conference
Football: UConn | Pittsburgh | Rutgers | Syracuse | West Virginia
  Non-football: Georgetown | Notre Dame | Providence | St. John's | Seton Hall | Villanova  
Leaving in July 2005: Boston College | Temple
Joining in July 2005: Cincinnati | DePaul | Louisville | Marquette | USF



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