JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The University of North Florida is making sure its reputation as a commuter school changes in a hurry.
Beginning in the Summer 2012 semester, all first-year students must live on campus.
While UNF has not historically been known for students living on the Southside campus, spokesperson Sharon Ashton said they have 3,000 beds on campus with long-range plans for more.
Ashton said student success is what's leading the call for change.
"Their grades are better, they're more likely to take advantage of tutoring and other programs available to them, they surround themselves in an atmosphere that's conducive to study, they make the transition from high school, they're more likely to graduate on time," are among the statistics Ashton cited for first-year students living on campus.
UNF now has about 16,000 students enrolled, Ashton said, from all over the state and the region. "It's time to move from being a commuter school to being a traditional school," she added.
The rule applies equally to students who live in the area as well, but Ashton said the housing rates are "very competitive" with what students would pay to live off-campus.
According to the UNF housing website, the least expensive room rate for the fall 2011 semester costs $1,960, and the most expensive is $4,600.
Ashton said there are exemptions.
First-year students over 21 years old, those who are married or have children, or anyone with health issues or a "compelling individual circumstance" can request a housing exemption.
First Coast News