Florida Gulf Coast University, also known as FGCU, is a coeducational public research university located just south of the Southwest Florida International Airport in the South Fort Myers region of unincorporated Lee County, Florida, United States. The university belongs to the 12-campus State University System of Florida. FGCU competes in the Atlantic Sun Conference in Division I sports and is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees. The school was established by then-governor Lawton Chiles in 1991, although the site of the university was not chosen until 1992, and construction pushed back even further still (until 1995). The school first held classes in August 1997. Roy McTarnaghan was named as the university's founding president.
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