The name State College of Florida (SCF) has been used only since 2009 to refer to this college located in Manatee County, but the institution has a history going back several decades. Before the name change, SCF was known as the Manatee Community College, and this is the name that most people still associate with this institution of higher learning.
SCF started off as Manatee Junior College when it was established by the Florida State Board of Education in 1957. It is the oldest and largest community college in Florida and was established to make higher education more accessible to the youth and adults of Florida. At its founding, it started with a student population of only 500 and classes were held in a former high school.
The college’s expansion led to the development of additional campuses and an ever-increasing student enrollment. Today, SCF serves over 36,000 students per year. The college has four campuses – SCF Bradenton, SCF Lakewood and SCF Venice and also conducts many courses through various public sector sites and also via eLearning.
The great development that took place in 2009 to necessitate the change of name from Manatee Community College to SCF was the approval by the Florida State Board of Education for the college to offer a four-year Bachelor of Science degree in nursing. Before then, the college was only offering associate degrees.