Orange Park, Florida (FL) Colleges and Universities

While there are only five schools in Orange Park, FL, there are many universities and colleges located within a 25-mile radius. Read about the top schools in several categories to find the school for you.

School Ranking Overview

The town of Orange Park, Florida, has a few private for-profit school options that primarily offer vocational training programs. There are multiple educational institutions in the surrounding area, however, that give students the chance to attend public or private non-profit four-year schools. This article focuses on four of those institutions and ranks them in the following categories:

  • Program Variety
  • Net Price
  • Graduation Rate
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Program Variety

Of the four compared schools, all offer undergraduate education and two of them also provide graduate-level programs. The top three institutions of the group in terms of program count, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), are listed below. Schools with a large number of programs can be beneficial to students who are undecided about their future career paths as well as those who might want to explore areas of specialization within their chosen fields.

1. Florida State College at Jacksonville

Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) is located roughly 15 miles from Orange Park. The public school offers about 125 academic programs that culminate in associate's degrees, undergraduate certificates and bachelor's degrees. Students at FSCJ can study transportation management, business, computer networking, web design, nursing, mortuary science and engineering technology, among many other fields.

2. University of North Florida

Another public institution, Jacksonville's University of North Florida (UNF) is within 20 miles of Orange Park and awards graduate certificates in addition to degrees at the associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral levels. UNF students are able to choose from 80 programs that cover areas of study such as teacher education, international business, computer science, physical therapy, nursing, music, economics and engineering.

3. Jacksonville University

As its name suggests, Jacksonville University is based out of Jacksonville and ranks third with its 51 program options. The private non-profit institution is less than 20 miles from Orange Park and gives students the opportunity to earn bachelor's degrees, graduate certificates, master's degrees and doctorates. A few of the subjects available include education, marketing, aviation management, dance, film studies, chemistry, nursing and orthodontics.

Net Price

Graduating with a heavy debt burden is a very real issue among today's college students, so finding a school with reasonable costs is a priority for many. According to 2012-2013 data from the NCES, the following institutions have the lowest undergraduate net prices among those profiled.

1. Florida State College at Jacksonville

FSCJ ranks first with its average net price of $7,336. The NCES determines a school's net price by subtracting the average awarded financial aid package from the total cost of attendance; the latter of which is based on in-state tuition, fees and educational costs like textbooks and housing.

2. Edward Waters College

A four-year private non-profit institution in Jacksonville, Edward Waters College is a small school offering bachelor's degree programs. It takes second place with an average net price of $12,188.

3. University of North Florida

Rounding out the top three is UNF. Undergrads at this school paid a net price of $13,207 on average for the 2012 academic year.

Graduation Rate

When trying to narrow down school options, it can be helpful to compare them based on their graduation rates. These stats may offer a suggestion of the educational quality offered by colleges or universities. According to the NCES, the schools below have the highest graduation rates based on students who enrolled in undergrad programs in fall 2007 and finished them within 150% of normal time.

1. University of North Florida

With a graduation rate of 50% in 2013, UNF claims the top position in this category. The university's fall 2012 to fall 2013 retention rate for full-time bachelor's-level students was 82%, according to the NCES.

2. Jacksonville University

Jacksonville University has an overall graduation rate of 38% -- the second highest of the bunch. Although this figure is under 50%, the majority of undergrads at the school did maintain their enrollment in recent years. Of those that entered full-time bachelor's degree programs in fall 2012, 72% continued on there a year later (NCES).

3. Florida State College at Jacksonville

At 35%, FSCJ had the third highest graduation rate. As of November 2014, the NCES has not reported a retention rate for this college.

Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Schools' student-to-faculty ratios can have an impact on students' academic experience; those with lower ratios may be better able to provide personalized attention and feedback to students in the classroom. Of the four profiled, these three institutions have the lowest ratios, per 2013 stats from the NCES.

1. Jacksonville University

Jacksonville University's ratio is the lowest of the group; there are an average of just 12 students for every one faculty member, which suggests that the school is likely able to provide small class sizes for its student body. In the fall of 2013, Jacksonville University employed 184 full-time and four part-time faculty members in instructional positions (NCES).

2. Edward Waters College

Ranking second is Edward Waters College, which had a 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio. Serving a population of less than 1,000 students, the faculty was comprised of 45 full-time and 34 part-time professors in 2013 (NCES).

3. University of North Florida

UNF's student-to-faculty ratio stands at 20:1, placing the school in the third position in the category. According to 2013 NCES figures, the institution's faculty included 782 professionals of which roughly 98% held instructional roles.

Schools near Orange Park: At a Glance

School Name Location School Type Programs Offered Area Ranking
Edward Waters College Jacksonville, FL Private non-profit Bachelor's degrees #2 in Net Price, #2 in Student-to-Faculty Ratio
Florida State College at Jacksonville Jacksonville, FL Public Undergraduate certificates; associate's and bachelor's degrees #1 in Program Variety, #1 in Net Price, #3 in Graduation Rate
Jacksonville University Jacksonville, FL Private non-profit Graduate certificates; bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees #3 in Program Variety, #2 in Graduation Rate, #1 in Student-to-Faculty Ratio
University of North Florida Jacksonville, FL Public Graduate certificates; associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees #2 in Program Variety, #3 in Net Price, #1 in Graduation Rate, #3 in Student-to-Faculty Ratio

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