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Whether it's for the beach, the climate, the sunsets, or all three, people flock to the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater (or the "Tampa Bay area") area each year for summers and winters alike. A large number of tourist attractions, from beaches to theme parks to resort hotels and golf courses provide the Tampa Bay area most of its activity.

Tampa Bay and St. Petersburg are Florida's third and fourth largest cities, with populations of 317,647 and 247,610, respectively. Jacksonville is the state's largest city, with a population of 773,781, followed by Miami, at 376,815.

Called "The Big Guava" (Tampa Bay) and the "Suncoast," the Tampa Bay area is home to over 1.5 million residents. The average income per capita in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area is $31,677, just below the national average, and its unemployment rate is significantly lower than the same average (2.9%).

The Tampa-Saint Petersburg-Clearwater area has a highly focused economy:

  • Tourism is the foundation of the Tampa Bay area. More than $2 billion in revenue is generated directly by tourism each year.
  • Banking, medical technology, and manufacturing industries also provide economic stability to the Tampa Bay area.
  • Research and marine science thrive in the Tampa Bay area, given its location on the Gulf of Mexico.


Several universities and research labs make it the largest marine science research center in the southeast. These research centers have spurred on the growth of medical technologies as well, such as digital image and record keeping for hospitals.

For more information on colleges and universities in Florida, explore our Florida state page.


Sources:

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Tampa, Florida (FL) Colleges and Universities

Note: This list also contains online schools that accept students from this state.
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2 Program(s) Found
Lincoln Tech , West Palm Beach
  • Encompasses the Lincoln Tech, Lincoln Culinary Institute, and Lincoln College of New England brands.
  • Lincoln schools made more than $15 million available nationally through scholarships to qualified students in 2015.
  • Designated a Military Friendly School for the 6th year in a row by Victory Media; offers exclusive scholarship for servicemen and women and their families.
  • First Lincoln Tech campus opened in 1946; now 30 campuses in 15 states across the United States.
  • Campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), Accrediting Commission of Career Schools (ACCSC), Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), and New England Association of Schools and Colleges – Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NEASC)
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  • Accredited
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Students get real-world experience through the required externship at the end of the program.
  • Curriculum includes laboratory sessions, academic preparation and hands-on experience.
  • Program objectives are to provide students with skills needed for cooking wholesome, attractive, food preparations and to assist graduates in obtaining positions in the food service industry.
  • Accredited by the American Culinary Federation (ACF).
  • Has campuses in Melbourne, Sarasota, and Tallahassee, Florida
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5 Program(s) Found
  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
  • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
  • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
  • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
  • Features a competency-based MBA program that allows students to test out of subjects based on prior professional experience.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
5 Program(s) Found
  • Offers quality career training in the growing fields of allied health, business, design, education, information technology, legal studies, nursing and technical trades. 
  • Hires instructors who are qualified professionals with industry-specific expertise.
  • Provides Career Services Officers to assist students with everything from interviewing skills to improving their resume. 
  • Has 5 campus locations across Florida.
  • Member of the Florida Association of Postsecondary Schools and Colleges (FAPSC).
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4 Program(s) Found
  • Incorporates hands-on training into all programs to provide students with important experience.
  • Provides trained student finance planners to assist students seeking financial aid.
  • Offers classes built around small teams, so students get personal, one-on-one skills training.
  • Provides day, evening, and weekend classes. (Classes offered may vary by location.)
  • Has 100 campuses— many of which are on or near public transportation routes.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Flexible Scheduling
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  • Transferable Credits
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Sunstate Academy , Clearwater
  • Providing cosmetology training in Florida for over 35 years. 
  • Stands as a Redken Premier School with qualified instructors who have Redken professional training and salon experience.
  • Allows students to practice their skills with top Redken products.
  • Has full-service salons run by students available at both campus locations.
  • Offers career placement help for students, and regularly holds recruitment events for employers.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
2 Program(s) Found
  • Ranked among the Best Colleges in the South in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked the 13th  Best College for Veterans in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • A private institution founded in 1977 with a current total undergraduate enrollment of over 15,00.
  • Its student-faculty ratio is 12:1, and 89.3% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
  • Has students attend one class at a time to ensure easy access to faculty and a more hands-on education.
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