Polk State celebrates funding for Haines City-Davenport Campus

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Polk State College is celebrating critical funding for its Haines City-Davenport Campus with Governor Ron DeSantis signing the state’s $116.5 billion 2024-2025 budget which includes $8.1 million for the development of the future facility.

The budget also maintains the College’s operating budget. Approximately $1.5 million for renovations to the Lakeland Academic Center (LAC) Building I on the Lakeland Campus was vetoed.

“Polk State College is incredibly thankful to Governor DeSantis for his support of quality higher education and workforce development, which is illustrated by the inclusion of this funding for our Haines City-Davenport Campus which will respond directly to workforce education needs in the most rapidly growing region of Polk County,” President Angela Garcia Falconetti said.

The Haines City-Davenport Campus is a $51 million project to construct a 75,000-square-foot facility that will include Central Florida’s first public higher education interdisciplinary simulation hospital. In addition to a focus on health sciences, the campus will also include hospitality and tourism management, supply chain and logistics, teacher education, and courses for the Associate in Arts degree.

With the most recent allocation, the State has invested approximately $34.6 million since 2009 for this development. The College has also raised supporting funds through its annual A Night of Legacy gala and the generosity of donors – most notably Barney Barnett and his family who pledged $3 million to the project in April 2024.

Garcia Falconetti also thanks the Florida Legislature and the Polk County Legislative Delegation for their hard work.

“The great strides we have made as a community to bring this longtime dream closer to fruition take the support and dedication of many,” Garcia Falconetti said. “I am grateful to our Governor, delegation members, and the Polk State District Board of Trustees for their continued dedication.”