SCF President Dr. Carol Probstfeld

Carol F Probstfeld, Ed.D.

Dr. Carol F. Probstfeld is the sixth president of State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota. Established in 1957, SCF is the area’s oldest and largest public college with more than 50,000 graduates. With campuses in Bradenton, Venice and Lakewood Ranch and an online presence, SCF serves 14,300 credit students annually and another 11,600 noncredit participants. Dr. Probstfeld was named SCF president in January 2013.

Dr. Probstfeld came to SCF in 2003 as vice president of business and administrative services where she oversaw the budgets and administrative operations for SCF, a $100 million enterprise that makes a $432 million annual economic impact on the region. The College prepares students for university transfer with its Associate in Arts degree or for immediate employment with 30 workforce Associate in Science degrees, 5 Baccalaureate degrees and 36 certificate programs.

As SCF president, Dr. Probstfeld is committed to building and nurturing relationships and focusing on enhancing the student experience. Her 25 years of higher education experience at small private institutions and large public colleges includes a track record of fostering collaboration and community partnerships.

Dr. Probstfeld led SCF’s efforts to Boldly Engage its students, faculty, staff, and community partners to achieve the goals of the college’s 2015-2020 Boldly Engaging strategic plan. Her efforts resulted in multiple significant achievements in the five-year plan, including the purchase of property for a future Parrish campus, the addition of signature programs to the Venice Campus, multiple successful strategic enrollment initiatives, and the creation of a Leadership Development program to mentor future College leaders, among many other accomplishments. She now looks to Boldly Lead our community’s higher education efforts through the College’s 2021-26 Boldly Leading strategic plan.

Dr. Probstfeld led SCF’s efforts to manage the COVID-19 pandemic on its campuses. As part of the 2016-2021 strategic plan, SCF moved all its information technology servers to the cloud, giving it the required bandwidth and connectivity to successfully transition to all online classes in Spring 2020. She directed SCF’s Return to Campus Task Force to create a plan for a safe environment for employees and students on its campuses and piloted the plan with a successful return for students and employees to campus in June 2020. She directed the creation of a Fall 2020 schedule that let students choose how they wanted to attend classes – face to face on campus, online, or the newly offered format of Go Live with SCF Online. More than 90 percent of SCF students surveyed in the fall reported they felt safe on SCF campuses.

Her efforts led to SCF receiving a $500,000 grant from the Florida Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund to provide rapid credentialing opportunities to help underemployed or unemployed community members in the College’s service area transition to new occupations.

Under her leadership, the SCF Foundation exceeded its revised fundraising goal for 2020 to support SCF students impacted by the pandemic’s economic impacts. The Foundation was forced to cancel three major fundraising events due to COVID-19 and revised its annual goal from $2.5 million to $1.75 million. The Foundation nearly reached its original goal with $2.4 million for the year, including a 4.4 percent increase in employee participation.

Dr. Probstfeld served as the Florida College System Activities Association President (2017-18) and the Bradenton Area Economic Development Corporation Chair (2016-17). She provided statewide leadership to the Florida College System as Council of Presidents Chair (2015-16) and Policy and Advocacy Chair (2014-15). She is active in several local organizations, including the Manatee Memorial Hospital Board of Governors and the Sarasota Chamber of Commerce. Dr. Probstfeld was a member of Leadership Florida Class XXXIV.

Before coming to SCF, Probstfeld served as vice president for finance and administration, chief financial officer and treasurer for Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, Calif., and Notre Dame College of Ohio in South Euclid, Ohio.

Dr. Probstfeld is from Whittier, Calif. She received her doctorate in Organizational Leadership from Argosy University, an MBA from John Carroll University, and bachelor’s degrees in Accounting and Marketing from California State Polytechnic University. Dr. Probstfeld enjoys attending student plays, concerts, ball games and club events and speaking with community groups. When her busy schedule as SCF president allows, she hones underwater photography skills while diving. She lives with her husband, Bill Murphy, and their "fur kids" – Kelly, a red smooth-coated Brussels Griffon, and Monte, a Yorkshire Terrier.

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