KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Florida National University has become a new member of The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). The NAIA announced the approval of eight institutions for association membership, seven of which are effective July 1, 2018. The total number of NAIA members institutions are up to 253.
New members include Columbia International University (S.C.), Cottey College (Mo.), Florida National University, Green Mountain College (Vt.), Lincoln College (Ill.), Ottawa University (Ariz.) and The Pennsylvania State University Schuylkill and Thomas More College (Ky.). Thomas More’s membership becomes effective at the beginning of the 2019-20 academic year.
“We’re honored to be part of the NAIA,” said Fernando Valenzuela, Athletic Director of Florida National University.
The NAIA accepts new member applications annually with an October 1 deadline for the following academic year. Schools must meet membership criteria that include financial stability, sports sponsorship, accreditation, and a commitment to character-driven athletics. Enrollment numbers, graduation percentages, retention rates, and overall athletics budgets.
Current NAIA associate members Cleary University (Mich.), Rust College (Miss.) and University of Virgin Islands were approved as active members by the COP.
Florida National University will be a member of the Association of Independent Institutions Conference (AII) which has 20 championship sports.
Florida National University sponsors 5 sports in Baseball, Men’s Basketball, Women’s Volleyball, Women’s Soccer and Men’s Soccer, while adding Women’s Basketball and Men and Women Tennis for the Fall of 2018.