STUDENTS

From scholarships to service-learning opportunities, charitable support for students enhances a UCF education for Knights of today and tomorrow.

“UCF Stands for Opportunity.” This promise describes what’s best and most forward-looking at the University of Central Florida. From scholarships to internships, study-abroad programs to service-learning opportunities—charitable support for students enhances access to a UCF education for a new generation of Knights.

Opportunity is about opening doors and removing obstacles. Unfortunately, the hurdle that most often stands in the way of a UCF education is affordability. Growing numbers of academically gifted students and their families simply can’t absorb the rising cost of higher education—even at a public institution as reasonably priced as UCF.

For many years, our alumni, corporate contributors and other friends of UCF have made generous gifts to create named, endowed scholarships and other forms of financial assistance to help hardworking students gain access to a UCF education.

But we must do more. The dreams and aspirations of gifted students are at stake, as well as UCF’s own future as an institution of national distinction and international reach.

Increasing the number of endowed scholarships and other forms of student aid will help us strengthen UCF’s academic reputation by enrolling even greater numbers of National Merit Scholars and other academically gifted students, create a more diverse community and increase success after graduation by decreasing student debt. These goals support each other, increasing their combined impact. A simple act of generosity, such as creating an endowed scholarship, can be exponentially valuable to future generations of Knights.

FACULTY

Your gifts helps UCF recruit, retain and reward faculty and expand faculty-student collaboration in research.

Great teachers can change the lives of their students.  Outstanding faculty members inspire students, enhance academic programs and serve as a key element to a university’s achieving greatness.

Charitable giving assists UCF in recruiting, retaining and rewarding accomplished faculty, expanding the possibilities for faculty and student collaboration and achieving research breakthroughs.

Unfortunately, UCF is facing a critical faculty shortage due in part to the university’s growth in undergraduate enrollment. In addition, the state has greatly reduced its financial support over the past several years, limiting our ability to hire faculty members at a time when we’ve never needed them more.  At the same time, we must also maintain and enhance the quality of the talented teachers, scholars and researchers we already have.

The university’s best means of recognizing and rewarding exceptional faculty members, and drawing more of these individuals to UCF, is through named and endowed chairs and professorships.  Regrettably, the number of endowed faculty positions at UCF is significantly below that of our peer institutions.

It isn’t just about numbers. Our aspiration is to be known as one of the nation’s finest universities, and the growth of UCF’s national reputation must be about its quality of education, research and partnership initiatives.

The work of UCF faculty members enhances our world, from cutting-edge research that boosts our economy and quality of life, to engaging and mentoring teachers, scientists and leaders.  In and out of the classroom, our faculty members demonstrate what it means to be involved, engaged and contributing members of society.

PROGRAMS

Curricular and co-curricular programs on campus transform students' academic experiences into practical and usable skills that can be put into action throughout the region and state.

Combining a student’s course of study with related service in the community transforms the academic experience into real-world knowledge. Programs like curriculum and leadership development, internships, interdisciplinary work, research opportunities and academic enrichment programs all require private support. Below are just a few ways your gifts can help UCF students achieve their degrees while enriching their academic experience:

Help students succeed.  By consolidating our academic support programs into a one-stop Student Success Center, we can improve coordination and maximize resources. In addition, we can develop more online advising and mentoring tools, so that students can access expertise wherever and whenever they need it.

Support students at risk. UCF offers a number of innovative and highly successfully retention programs to help students adjust to college life and persist to graduation. Our Brother to Brother peer mentoring program for male, first-generation, multicultural students, our Fostering Foster Success program for students who may have “aged out” of the foster system and need special assistance, and support programs for the growing population of military veterans are all programs that benefit from donor support.

Develop future leaders. Many of UCF’s student success programs have garnered national recognition. The LEAD Scholars Program is a selective leadership development program for students committed to academic excellence and making a difference in the world. Lead OutLoud is an experiential program directed toward multicultural and first-generation students; and the Leadership Challenge engages students involved in the UCF Greek community. Donor support can multiply our students’ opportunities to excel as leaders.

Create a sense of belonging. Within a university community as large as UCF, students are more likely to stay connected if they identify as members of a smaller group, whether academic or extracurricular. By recognizing and supporting these groups, we can personalize our campus and solidify students’ connections to UCF.

Launch successful careers. Our state-of-the-art Career Services and Experiential Learning facility is the heart of UCF’s array of programs to prepare students for their futures in the workforce.  However, because a large portion of our student body resides off campus, additional resources are needed to develop online tools to prepare students for career success.

FACILITIES

Support for new facilities ehances the campus for students and the community.

Over the last 50 years, UCF facilities have been built and expanded to meet the needs of a growing student population. Gifts from donors have aided that growth, including the construction of the College of Medicine and Bright House Stadium, among others.   Three capital project areas — in Athletics, the UCF Libraries, and a performing arts center — will play a critical role in meeting the expanding needs of our campus.

Athletics
Charitable support is needed for four Athletics projects: the Student-Athlete Academic Performance Center, the UCF Baseball Stadium expansion, a new UCF Tennis Center and an expansion to the Bright House Stadium.

Student-Athlete Academic Performance Center — Our Knights excel in the classroom and in competition. They deserve the best educational and competitive experience available. The 24,000-square-foot Student-Athlete Academic Performance Center  will include an academic center offering 14 individual tutoring rooms, 12 mentoring rooms, a technology center with 50 computer work stations, 12 office spaces for advisors, a classroom with capacity for 30, a classroom/convocation space with capacity for 200 and a conference room. In addition, the Center for Student Services and Career Advisement will include three career advisement rooms, a resource center/classroom to accommodate 30 people and office space for student services and career advisement.

UCF Baseball Stadium expansion — An expanded and enhanced baseball stadium will help to meet our goal of hosting an NCAA post-season regional and super regional event, as well as increasing the size of our fan base. The baseball stadium expansion project will increase the seating capacity to 3,000+, add premium seating suites and club seating and provide a new and expanded press box, as well as additional restrooms, concessions and family-friendly amenities, including a children’s activity area and concessions.

UCF Tennis Center — Our planned tennis complex includes 12 outdoor courts, six covered courts and a clubhouse with locker rooms for the men’s and women’s tennis programs.

UCF Bright House Stadium expansion — This two-part plan will add additional suites and club suites to the Roth Tower and adding an upper deck on the east side of the stadium, in addition to an open-air club.

UCF Libraries
A gift to the UCF Libraries is an investment in the future of countless UCF students. The University Libraries has a collection of nearly 2.5 million volumes, including e-books, and welcomes more than 53,000 library users to the John C. Hitt (main) Library, Curriculum Materials Center and Rosen College of Hospitality Library during a typical mid-semester week.

Every part of the university depends on the library; the quality of UCF Libraries is directly related to the level of support it can provide to meet the education and research needs of students and faculty.

Performing Arts Center
Every performer must have a stage. Top-quality facilities will enhance the top-notch talents of UCF’s performing arts students, and set UCF’s programs apart from those at other universities.

Phase Two of the UCF Performing Arts Center will add much-needed performing arts venues to campus. Included will be a 600-seat concert hall, a 263-seat recital/lecture hall, instrument/orchestration and choral rehearsal halls, a 520-seat proscenium theatre and a 225-seat black box theatre. Costume, scene and prop shops and other technical support spaces are included.

These facilities will attract audiences from across Central Florida, immeasurably enriching the creative opportunities for performing arts students.

Phase One of the Performing Arts Center project, which added new academic, studio and rehearsal spaces to campus, as well as locating all music and theatre faculty in a single building, was completed in 2011.

© University of Central Florida Foundation, Inc. 2017