Graduate Schools in Florida: PhD & Masters Programs
The land of palm trees and manatees is home to the most visited tourist destination in America (Disney!) and no matter where you reside in the sunshine state, you’re never more than 60 miles from the Atlantic.
The beautiful weather and laid-back beach culture makes Florida a bright option for those looking for sun, sand and graduate schools with a water view. Start here to learn about living and studying in sunny Florida!
Popular Graduate Degree Programs in Florida
Why Go to Grad School in Florida?
Florida offers a rare mix of outdoor opportunities and glamorous city life where you can study entertainment, media and art in cities like Miami and Tampa or choose a more intimate program in a smaller seaside town like Dania Beach. The plethora of airports attracts grad students from around the world, and makes traveling to and from the state an easy advantage.
Additionally, Florida’s economy is expected to reach $1 trillion in 2018, a number greater than that of all but 15 countries. And the unemployment rate is at just 3.9%, below the national average of 4.1%, so there could be many opportunities for employment. Knowing the occupations employing the largest number of people in the Sunshine State could help guide your decision about which graduate degree to pursue.
Top 7 Occupations in Florida
Requiring a Post-Secondary Degree
Whether you need help deciding what degree to pursue, or just want to get a feel for
professions with the highest employment in Florida , the table below should be helpful.
- Registered Nurses178,330
- General and Operations Managers97,630
- Business Operations Specialists, All Other74,050
- Accountants and Auditors73,910
- Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education72,560
- Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education46,920
These results were reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For more information see the OES May 2017 State Data Report.
Live and Learn in Florida
Can you have it all? These five Florida gems represent with their range of exciting city amenities, beach access and multiple options for university graduate programs:
Miami is a multi-cultural resort town rich in history, art and opulence. The city and surrounding neighborhoods extend between the Florida Everglades to the west and Biscayne Bay to the east. Miami’s famous Art Deco district is made up of hundreds of hotels, apartments and structures built during the iconic era. South Beach, anchored by a vibrant collection of brightly-painted lifeguard stations, is 2.5-square-miles of open-air restaurants, chic hotels and nightlife. Most recently, the Deco-inspired Faena hotel and surrounding Faena District has brought a new wave of modern art and architecture to the city. As projects like the Faena District continue to keep Miami a desirable destination, the town has become a playground for celebrities and world-class festival including Art Basel. Naturally, graduate studies in hospitality, design and entertainment draw interest from students around the world.
Jacksonville is the most populated city in the state. Located just north of Miami along the St. Johns River, the cityscape is a mix of preserved historic architecture—some buildings from 1902—to skyscrapers and new modern development. Jacksonville’s convenient location has made the city a hub for transportation and distribution and the town boasts a strong military presence. Jacksonville offers 22 miles of beach, the largest urban park system in the country and unexpected art in public places like the mural at the Jacksonville Main Library. The “River City by the Sea” has attracted major corporations including Amazon and Mercedes-Benz USA to open locations here.
Tampa is a decidedly metropolitan area on the Gulf Coast and the second largest city in the state. The interesting landscape features high-rises and skyscrapers in downtown and historical landmarks from the early 1900s in the Ybor City district. Like many coastal towns in Florida, Tampa's climate is hot and humid in the summer with frequent thunderstorms and mild winters. On nice days, the 2.4-mile Riverwalk is teeming with people heading from downtown to the public market, Florida Aquarium and Tampa Bay History Center. Or take a ride on the TECO Streetcar, which connects downtown to Channelside, Amalie Arena and Ybor City.
Palm Beach has a storied charm that extends from its historic mansions to the upscale shopping on Worth Avenue. Situated on an 18-mile-long barrier island along the Intracoastal Waterway dotted with towering palm trees (which inspired the name), Palm Beach is the easternmost town in Florida. While cost of living is on the affluent side, the tight-knit community and waterfront residences have made Palm Beach a desirable place to live and play.
Fort Lauderdale requires two things: sunscreen and a sea-loving spirit. The town is famous for its sandy beaches, and abundance of water activities including gondola rides through the historic riverfront, the brick-paved beachfront promenade, scuba and snorkeling adventures and airboat tours through the swamp (look for gators!). The famous luxury shopping on Las Olas Boulevard is surrounded by mansions and yachts on Millionaires Row.
Explore Graduate Schools in Florida
Here’s a list of five sponsored graduate schools in Florida. Check out the directory for more options.
The Floridian lifestyle lends to a diverse range of graduate school options. And the state’s melding of cultures also influences continuing education. From tourism to foreign language programs to environmental education, here are some top options to study from our partner grad schools.
Popular Graduate Schools in Florida
Campus and Online
Post Graduate Certificate
Campus and Online
Campus and Online
Campus and Online
Campus and Online
M.I.T. (Master of Information Technology)
Campus and Online
Hospitality and Tourism Management
With the influx of residents and visitors to the sunshine state every year, it’s no surprise that Florida is a great option for educational opportunities focused on how to keep people satisfied in their choice of property and destination. At Florida International University, the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management is ranked one of the top hospitality management schools in the U.S. thanks to faculty members with strong credentials and executive-level industry experience. The course is only offered on-campus, but the reputation behind FIU may fast-track career advantages in the international hotel, foodservice and tourism industries: More than 100 hospitality and tourism companies visit FIU every year to hire new graduates for management positions.
Compare to the on-campus, Master of Science in Entertainment Business degree at Full Sail University. Described as an advanced exploration of the business and management skill needed to lead in the entertainment field, students learn financial planning and strategies from top executive including formal business plan development and contract negotiation.
Florida is a haven for park lovers and coastal enthusiasts. At Florida Atlantic University, the graduate resident program consists of two years of course work, teaching, developing environmental education program and working at the Pine Jog Environment Education Center. At the end of the program, students will earn a Master’s in Curriculum with an emphasis in Environmental Education. Compare to the Master’s Environmental Science program at Florida Gulf Coast University which also has a strong emphasis on sustainability and involves an integrated study of uplands, wetlands, estuaries and coastal systems, environmental education and public outreach.
Marine and Coastal Sciences
At Nova Southeastern University in Dania Beach, students at the Oceanographic Center conduct research on a variety of marine issues ranging from physical oceanography to coral reefs. The on-campus program can be done in less than two years. Or consider the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science—one of the largest oceanographic facilities in the U.S. Established in 1943, the Rosenstiel School started as the Marine Laboratory for the University of Miami and has since expanded from a humble boathouse to one the nation’s leading options for oceanographic and atmospheric education and research. The school offers courses in all things ocean: marine and atmospheric chemistry, marine geology and geophysics, ocean acoustics, ocean engineering, applied marine physics, physical oceanography, satellite oceanography, meteorology, marine biology and fisheries, biochemistry, marine biomedicine, marine biotechnology and marine affairs and management. Graduate studies include Master of Science, Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees.
For those looking to work in the media in Europe, Latin America or the United States, the Spanish-Language Journalism program at Jacksonville University focuses on the writing, critical thinking, analytic and ethical skills necessary for a professional career in the communications field. At Lynn University in Boca Raton, the on-campus Master of Science in Media Studies and Practice offers hands-on experience in editing, designing and video production. Perks include:
- A television producer who’s worked with Fox and the Oprah Winfrey Network
- A former international radio and TV reporter, producer and presenter
- A video, animation and 3D graphics expert
- A Fulbright scholar specializing in international advertising
- A widely published scholar and past editor of Women’s Studies in Communication
The sports drink Gatorade was named for the University of Florida Gators where the drink was first developed.
Pro Florida Sports
There’s a lot to cheer for in the Sunshine State: Florida has three teams in the National Football League: the Jacksonville Jaguars, Miami Dolphins and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The National Basketball League: Miami Heat and Orlando Magic. The Major League Baseball teams include the Miami Marlins and the Tampa Bay Rays. The Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning for the National Hockey League.
Did you know?
Islamorada is an angler’s paradise and knowns as the Sports fishing Capital of the World.
Nature Lovers Wanted
You may want to put your Netflix account on hold considering all the unspoiled islands, wetlands, marshes, beaches and preserves available to explore in Florida. Here, five favorites:
- For divers: The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary: The park protects some 2,900 nautical miles surrounding the Keys. While the reef is protected, you are free to swim, dive and snorkel among the world’s third largest barrier reef, 6,000 species of marine life, shipwrecks and mangrove-fringed island.
- For walking: Gainesville-Hawthorne State Trail: As part of Florida’s Rails to Trails initiative, the popular 16-mile path winds through the Payne’s Prairie Preserve for walkers, joggers, cyclists and the occasional horse.
- For hiking: Pinellas Trail: Deemed as the longest urban linear trail in the eastern U.S., this 47-mile trek connects St. Petersburg with Central and North Pinellas County. Biking welcome.
- For cyclists: Abbey Hanna Park: Jacksonville has more than 80,000 acres of parks, including 10 national parks and a national preserve. At Abbey Hanna, 20-miles of mixed-use trails meander past cabin rentals, a freshwater lake and access to beaches where you may spot egrets, osprey and manatees.
- For tours: The Florida Everglades: The Sawgrass Recreational Park offers airboat excursions into the thick of the swamp among endangered wildlife and native species. Turtles, iguanas and Florida alligators call this subtropical ecosystem home. They also host a nighttime tour appropriately called Gator Nights.
Did you know?
The Florida Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art in Coral Gables is the first and only museum in the United States dedicated to the preservation, diffusion and promotion of Hispanic and Latin American Art.
Choose a Grad School in Florida
Feel like you’re one Jimmy Buffet song away from becoming a true Floridian? If Florida may be a good fit for your professional goals,browse the programs below or use the filter up top to get started!
Argosy UniversitySarasota, FLSarasota, FLArgosy University's professional education built, on a rich academic heritage, offers flexible online programs in business, education and psychology. As a student in one of our online programs, you will enjoy a collegial, supportive academic e...
Southeastern UniversityLakeland, FLLakeland, FLSoutheastern is committed to preparing students for success in professional and ministerial careers. From its inception in 1935 as a Bible institute to train pastors and missionaries, Southeastern has rested on a solid foundation of vision and faith.
Carlos Albizu UniversityDoral, FLDoral, FLCarlos Albizu University (CAU) is a private, non-profit, institution of higher learning with campuses in Miami, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Through its expert faculty, CAU offers exciting and challenging programs in Business Administration, Ed...
Additional Florida Campus: Online
Jacksonville UniversityJacksonville, FLJacksonville, FLRegistered Nurses - looking for a convenient way to update your skills and knowledge while you advance your nursing career and earning potential? You can at Jacksonville University's School of Nursing.
University of OrlandoOrlando, FLOrlando, FL
American InterContinental UniversityOnlineOnlineSerious about success? With your busy schedule and the desire to move your career forward, at AIU, the Serious U™, you can earn an accredited associate, bachelors or master’s degree at a pace that works for you anywhere, anytime,...
Additional Florida Campus: Weston
Pensacola Christian CollegePensacola, FLPensacola, FLAt Pensacola Christian College students will get a liberal arts education with a Christian background. The College will help students develop intellectually, spiritually, morally, culturally and socially. Pensacola offers students the choice of more ...
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical UniversityOnlineOnlineEmbry-Riddle Aeronautical University proudly calls itself the “Best Aviation and Aerospace University in the World.” This claim comes from the fact that the school was founded just 22 years after the first flight of the Wright brothers. Cover all...
Additional Florida Campus: Daytona Beach
Florida Gulf Coast UniversityFort Myers, FLFort Myers, FLThere is no where better to spend your four years of college than on the beautiful Florida Gulf Coast. Most universities are stagnant and reply heavily on their reputation. Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida offers a university tha...
Additional Florida Campus: Online
University of TampaTampa, FLTampa, FLThe University of Tampa is a highly ranked private university located in the heart of downtown Tampa, Florida. The beautiful Tampa Bay Area is West Central Florida's vibrant center of government, business, scientific research, sports and entertainmen...
Northwood UniversityWest Palm Beach, FLWest Palm Beach, FLNorthwood University is a school for business minded students. The school places a great deal of importance on its’ students freedom and personal responsibility and ethical standards. The school believes in developing the knowledge that allows stu...
Lynn UniversityBoca Raton, FLBoca Raton, FLThe Lynn online MBA is a well-respected program, rated Top 10 in the region by South Florida Business Journal, nationally-ranked by U.S. News and World Report, and considered to be one of the best online MBA programs in Florida. ...
Additional Florida Campus: Online
St. Vincent De Paul Regional SeminaryBoynton Beach, FLBoynton Beach, FLSt Vincent De Paul Regional Seminary is in Boynton Beach, Florida and only one of two bilingual major Catholic seminaries in the US. It is a graduate, professional, Catholic school of Theology, and it prepares candidates for priesthood or clergy spi...
University of North TexasDenton, TXDenton, TXUNT is a student-focused, public, research university located in Denton, Texas. As one of Texas' largest universities, we offer 97 bachelor's, 88 master's and 40 doctoral degree programs within the university's 11 colleges and schools.
Additional Texas Campus: Pensacola
Florida A And M University / Florida State UniversityTallahassee, FLTallahassee, FLSun plus an excellent education in Tallahassee, Florida, what more could you ask for during you college education. Florida A&M University welcomes international students to get an outstanding education in Florida. At Florida A&M University students ...
Florida Atlantic UniversityFort Lauderdale, FLFort Lauderdale, FLFlorida Atlantic University, also referred to as FAU or Florida Atlantic, is a public, coeducational, research university located in Boca Raton, Florida, United States. The university has six satellite campuses located in the Florida cities of Dania ...
Union Institute and UniversityCincinnati, OHCincinnati, OHUnion Institute & University is a private, not-for-profit university, that educates highly motivated adults who seek academic programs to engage, enlighten, and empower them to pursue professional goals and a lifetime of learning, service, and...
Additional Ohio Campus: North Miami Beach
Florida Institute of TechnologyMelbourne, FLMelbourne, FLFlorida Tech is a tier 1 ranked university with programs in science, engineering, aeronautics, business, humanities, psychology, and communication.
Palmer College of ChiropracticPort Orange, FLPort Orange, FLPalmer College of Chiropractic is where chiropractic began. It was founded by the discoverer of chiropractic, D.D. Palmer, in 1897. With three campuses to choose from, Palmer is the leader and the largest chiropractic college in the profession.
Gooding Institute Of Nurse AnesthesiaPanama City, FLPanama City, FLThe Gooding Institute of Nurse Anesthesia is one of the top graduate programs of its kind in the United States. The institute is located at Bay Medical Center in Panama City, Florida. Gooding Institute offers the advantage of hands on experience in a...
Warner Southern CollegeOnlineOnlineWarner University is a co-educational institution located in Lake Wales, Florida. It is affiliated with the Church of God (Anderson) and has been founded as Warner Southern College, but in 2008 its name was changed to Warner University. The number of...
Additional Florida Campus: Lake Wales
Webber International UniversityBabson Park, FLBabson Park, FLFounded in 1927, Webber International University is a private, independent four-year coed Business university plus an MBA program, located 40 minutes from Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Recognized as one of the “Best Universities in the Southeas...
Florida State UniversityTallahassee, FLTallahassee, FLOne of the nation's elite research universities, Florida State University — with the Carnegie Foundation's highest designation, Doctoral/Research University-Extensive — offers a distinctive academic environment.
Nova Southeastern UniversityFort Lauderdale, FLFort Lauderdale, FLAt Nova Southeastern University, your nursing curriculum is grounded in research and teaches innovative thinking. You'll learn how to provide the best patient care in any setting amidst constant industry change.