(Carl Cronan is editor of Real EstateFlorida.)

|

ORLANDO, FL-Kaplan University plans to open a new online studentsupport center in a two-story, 124,000-square-foot office buildingat Central Florida Research Park, 12650 Ingenuity Drive. The centeris an expansion of the college's existing facility in SouthFlorida.

|

Davenport, IA-based Kaplan considered 20 cities across the USbefore announcing Monday that it will place its center in Orlandowith plans to hire up to 750 area residents over the next fouryears. The news was timed especially well for local officials, whochose to make the announcement during this week's CoreNet GlobalSummit at Walt Disney World.

|

"We were very much on the cusp of not even getting this project,but after having them in to look at some of our work-force numberswe were able to convince them that this is a good community forthem to be in," Rodney Hughes, business development director of theMetro Orlando Economic Development Commission, tells GlobeSt.com.He adds that Kaplan sought an inland location in Florida that isless vulnerable to hurricanes and other potential weatherdisasters.

|

Lease arrangements are still being negotiated between Kaplan andCentral Florida Research Park, which takes up at least 1,000 acresnear the University of Central Florida. The Orlando center is setto open in January and will include admissions advisors, financialaid officers, human resources and information technologyrepresentatives.

|

Kaplan currently has 1,500 employees in two 100,000-square-footbuildings near West Cypress Creek Road in Fort Lauderdale, wherethe school has had a presence since 2000 and expanded last year.Approximately 60 employees will be transferred from other Kaplansupport centers to get the Orlando office up and running.

|

"We enjoy doing business in Florida and look forward to buildingupon our presence in the state," Andrew Rosen, Kaplan president,stated in a release. He described Kaplan's "explosive growth overthe last several years" as the reason for adding to its othersupport centers in Chicago and Phoenix.

|

Kaplan claims 37,000 online college students, plus another 4,000at campuses in Iowa and Nebraska, making it one of the largestuniversities in the US. It offers master's, bachelor's andassociate degrees in more than 100 programs.

|

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, in a prepared statement, calledKaplan's new lease "a major score" for the Orlando market as wellas statewide efforts to advance its stature as an academic leader."By bringing this project to fruition, we have greatly enhancedefforts to maintain a business climate that nourishes the growth ofeducational institutions that are developing the talent and skillbase needed for tomorrow's economy," Crist said.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications
NOT FOR REPRINT

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.