Polk State Haines City-Davenport Campus to bring workforce training to Northeast Polk

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Polk State College continues to advocate for critical funding to complete the first phase of development for the Polk State Haines City-Davenport Campus. With $13.8 million allocated during the 2022 Legislative Session, the planning and design processes neared completion in 2023. The College is currently working to secure $16.2 million for construction during the 2024 Legislative Session.

Polk is Florida’s fastest-growing county and the nation’s seventh fastest-growing, with a 20% growth in population over the last decade. The Northeast region of Polk County, which includes the site of the future Haines City-Davenport Campus, is Polk’s fastest-growing area. The campus will also be adjacent to the Four Corners region, the portion of Central Florida where Osceola, Orange, Lake, and Polk counties intersect. This economic hotspot is absorbing thousands of new Florida residents each year and is teeming with construction and activity.

“Polk State’s expansion will put quality higher education and workforce training within reach for thousands of residents in Polk County’s fastest-growing region,” Polk State President Angela Garcia Falconetti said. “We know that this development is critical to meeting growing workforce demands, as well as a rapidly expanding population of residents.”

The site is adjacent to AdventHealth Heart of Florida on 7.8 acres purchased by the College in 2009. The planned 75,000-square-foot facility will house classroom, laboratory, and office spaces to support workforce training in Health Sciences, Supply Chain and Logistics, Supervision and Management, and Hospitality fields, as well as General Education courses for the Associate in Arts degree.

Polk State is Polk County’s largest-serving higher education and workforce training institution with more than 13,000 degree-seeking and 9,000 workforce-training students enrolled in programs annually. Currently, residents of Northeast Polk County must commute at least 30 miles roundtrip to reach a Polk State College campus.

Within a 10-mile radius of the Polk State Haines City-Davenport site, there are:

  • 80,000 residents whose educational attainment is a high school diploma or some college, but no degree.
  • 3,800 twelfth-grade students per year, amounting to 39% of all high school seniors in Polk County.
  • 17,000 new jobs projected in the next decade.

“Providing a Polk State education closer to home for thousands of residents will help ensure a bright future for our County,” Garcia Falconetti said. “Our College is grateful to the Florida Legislature, especially the Polk County Legislative Delegation, for investing in our institution and, most importantly, students and families whose lives will be transformed through the opportunities provided at this future location.”