To most people in the state, Rick Scott is a household name.
Yet the governor is not the only person with the name — in one case, the governor even shares the name someone in the academic field he received criticism for dismissing.
Richard Scott graduated from USF in May 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology, and now drives Bull Runner buses around campus for six to eight hours a day to “pay the bills.”
However, Scott is not a big fan of his Tallahassee namesake.
“I didn’t vote for him, even though we had the same name,” he said. “I didn’t like his policies and what he wanted to do in the state of Florida.”
His father’s name is also Richard Scott, but everyone calls him “Rick,” much to his son’s chagrin.
Scott said made sure to call his father before the election to let him know he was not voting for “him.”
Scott Hoos, a junior majoring in electrical engineering, said he likes to tease his longtime friend about the name.
“When we first started making the jokes, he was kind of was a little taken aback,” Hoos said. “As it became a normal thing, he started taking them in stride and sometimes lashing back a little bit.”
In an October interview on the Daytona Beach talk radio show “The Marc Bernier Show,” Gov. Scott singled out anthropology as a field that could use less Florida students, because of limited job opportunities.
“We don’t need a lot more anthropologists in the state,” he said. “It’s a great degree, if people want to get it, but we don’t need them here.”
Hoos asked Scott how he could be OK with a governor with the same name that could “talk so much smack” about his chosen field of study.
Yet for the first time last year, Scott said he agreed with the governor. There really is not a lot a student can do with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology, he said, which is why he has just applied to graduate school in anthropology.
Nonetheless, Scott said he was upset with the governor’s statements about the field.
“It’s kind of discriminating,” Scott said. “For you to cut that out, it’s discriminating against people because I don’t like engineering. He wants us all to love engineering. (Anthropology) is about humans and understanding ourselves. I’m sure there’s some great philosopher that said ‘In order to know the world, you have to know yourself first.’ I’m not a philosophy major.”
Scott said he hopes to be a forensic anthropologist and travel to Afghanistan to identify fallen soldiers’ remains.
“There’s a lot of families who sent a child, brother, sister, went overseas and they never saw them again,” he said. “Every American deserves to be buried at home, if that’s their wish, and their family deserves a little bit of closure, too.”
But Scott said he still has a sense of humor about his namesake, since the governor also has a daughter who studied anthropology in college.
“He talks about his daughter with an anthropology degree, but he forgets about his ‘son,'” he said.