By Nada Hassanein, Central Florida Future
Starting this summer, the UCF journalism and radio-television majors will become a single journalism or “news” program with two different tracks.
“All the faculty were involved in this — both radio-television and journalism,” says Tim Brown, UCF radio-television area coordinator. “This was everybody coming together.”
After much conversation, the changes will be in effect this summer. Students applying to the journalism program for summer 2015 will choose between two tracks: print-digital or electronic journalism. Students currently in the majors will finish according to their catalog year and will not be affected by the changes.
While the programs are not merging together, Brown says, there is an effort to collaborate and bridge the gap between the tracks.
“The newer curriculum allows for different electives, different experiences,” Brown says. “We’ve built in a lot of different things that we’re really excited for.”
He adds that all news students will be required to take a basic reporting class and basic videography class.
“We’re trying to establish that cooperation and collaboration between the two ‘sides’ a lot earlier,” he explains. “Yes, we want some specialization — but we want journalists.”
The new curriculum will allow students on the print-digital track to take a mid-level electronic reporting class, and students on the electronic track will have the opportunity to take copy editing, metro reporting and advanced photojournalism.
Along with feedback from students, a combination of factors inspired the changes, including properly preparing students for the news industry, and providing growth and stability for the program itself.
Brown says there is a possibility for the Nicholson School of Communication to relocate to the future downtown UCF campus, allowing students to take advantage of exploring media partners in the area.
“The planning and certification is all done, but the implementation begins,” he says.
See original article as it appeared in the Central Florida Future online.
The history of UCF’s live mascot program
By Angie Lewis, ’03
Tradition is in full force on game days at Bright House Networks Stadium. The UCF Marching Knights enter the stadium, followed by the cheerleaders, who lead fans through the War Chant. But, before the team arrives and the crowd starts jumping to “Zombie Nation,” there’s one more tradition to cheer, as Pegasus and the UCF Knight charge onto the field, rearing as Knightro draws the sword from the ground. While you may have seen this choreographed entrance many times, you may not know how this particular tradition got started, or where our “Pegasus” comes from.
The university has had a variety of Pegasus mascots over the years, including horses donated by Burt Reynolds in the ’80s, and Rick Walsh, ’70, retired Darden executive and UCF Trustee, in the ’90s.
In 2001, the UCF Alma Mater Society, comprised of the university’s Distinguished Alumnus Award winners, established the official mascot program, after presenting a proposal to the alumni association, which partnered with Medieval Times and received a donated horse named Centauro. That same year, the Equestrian Club at UCF and the Pegasus Mascot Team were established.
The “World Famous” Lipizzaner Stallions also donated horses to the program, until last year, when the UCF Alumni Association formed a relationship with Arabian Nights and Al-Marah Arabian Horses in Clermont, Fla.
The university’s current “Pegasus” is a 24-year-old Gray Arabian gelding, also known as Clemmy in the stables, who joined the mascot team in August 2013. His job in the former Arabian Nights dinner show was to rear off the bad guy.
“The light work load he does for UCF and our lesson program keeps him in shape and his mind active,” says Zach Becker, breeding manager for Al-Marah Arabians.
Arabian horses, named after the peninsula, are the oldest breed in the world, known for their small, refined, dished faces, Becker explains.
“Originally, they came from the desert, [which is how they got] their compact bodies and great stamina,” he continues. “They have a great temperament and willingness to please, as they slept in the tents with their riders when sandstorms arose in the desert.”
In addition to Clemmy, UCF also uses a 14-year-old Gray Arabian gelding named Kizmet for parades and other event photo ops.
“Thanks to Arabian Nights, our horses are used to large numbers of people, as well as lights and music,” Becker says. “Also, any new up-and-coming horses ride with us to the game and just hang out at the trailer for the day to get used to the sights and sounds of UCF. The more things we can acclimate them to, the better.”
The horses aren’t the only ones who are trained, however.
Carla Cordoba, ’94, associate director of constituent programs at the UCF Alumni Association, has been the advisor for the Pegasus Mascot Team since its inception. During that time, she’s overseen five horses and about 15 Knights.
Knights have to go through an audition process, which includes an in-person interview, as well as a riding evaluation, with current mascot team members, Cordoba and Becker, to see what their riding capabilities are, and to make sure they get along with the horses. Becker then works with those chosen on how to cue and ride each movement, teaching them how to speak the language Al-Marah’s horses will understand.
DID YOU KNOW…?
- Knightro is the athletics mascot and takes on a character persona, while Pegasus and the UCF Knight are a university mascot, although they both appear at athletic events.
- In addition to the other criteria required to be a Knight, each rider must also be able to fit into the small costume.
- All Knight rider candidates must squire for at least one year before applying. A squire’s main duties including grooming Pegasus, getting him and the Knight into their costumes, interacting with fans, and escorting Pegasus and the UCF Knight onto the field.
SUPPORT THE PEGASUS MASCOT PROGRAM
Want to be a part of UCF’s history and traditions by helping to keep the Pegasus Mascot Program alive? Contact Carla Cordoba at email@example.com or 407.823.3453 for more information.
UCF Alumni Scholarship Applications | Jan. 15 – March 31, 2015
Each year, the UCF Alumni Association awards more than $40,000 in scholarships. Scholarships are available for all class standings, and range from $500 to $2,000. With 20 different scholarships from which to choose, there’s something for everyone!
Applications open Jan. 15 and close March 31. Winners are announced over the summer, and the awards will be distributed at the beginning of the fall semester.
- Visit the Scholarships page on ucfalumni.com for detailed informaton about each scholarship, as well as application instructions.
- Log in to your myUCF account to see the scholarships for which you’re eligible.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 407.UCF.ALUM (823.2586).
Radio-TV alumna spends her days keeping one of TV’s most popular dramas on schedule
Jordan Henry, ’12 | Assistant to Line Producer, “Revenge”
By Angie Lewis, ’03
It’s only been a little more than two years since Jordan Henry, ’12, graduated from UCF, but she’s already added some pretty big names to her resume, which includes working as a production assistant on Bravo’s “Top Chef Duels,” temping as an office assistant at Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Television and interning at E! Entertainment Television’s “The Soup.” Her current gig, as the assistant to the line producer for ABC’s “Revenge,” may be the biggest name yet.
Her daily work for the primetime series includes maintaining the show’s production calendar, attending production meetings, tracking cast availability and working with ABC Legal on show clearances.
“I get to interact with various departments both on ‘Revenge’ and at ABC during the production of each episode, and I love seeing how everything comes together to create the finished product,” Henry says.
She hopes the experience she’s gaining will one day lead her to a position as a development executive for a television network.
Henry graduated from UCF with a bachelor’s degree in radio-television, and then went on to earn a master’s degree in television from Boston University.
Having grown up in West Virginia, Henry hadn’t heard of UCF until she began researching colleges.
“I toured the campus when I was in Orlando visiting family and ended up loving everything about it,” she explains.
While she was a student, she worked on Knightly News, directing live shows, and was a part of the Honors Congress, National Broadcasting Society and the Italian Club, just to name a few.
As an alumna and resident of Los Angeles, where “Revenge” is produced, she remains connected to her alma mater through the L.A. UCF Alumni Club.
That’s a Wrap Q&A
Q. Who’s your favorite character on “Revenge?”
A. Nolan Ross, the snarky tech genius
Q. Can you give us any hints as to how this season will end?
A. I can’t, because I don’t know, but I’m sure there will be plenty of surprises!
Q. What advice would you give to current radio-TV majors at UCF?
A. Be informed! Watch, read and listen to as many things as you can. You never know what you’ll learn or where inspiration will strike. Be able to form opinions about content and develop your own point of view. And network, network, network! You can never know too many people in this industry.
Q. Any hidden talents?
A. I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do/Karate.
Q. If you could be any fictional character, who would you be and why?
A. Leslie Knope from “Parks and Recreation” because she is a glorious, hardworking, loyal, passionate person, invested in pursuing her dreams as well as building strong relationships with her friends and loved ones. And, also because she eats a lot of waffles.
Q. Last TV show you watched?
A. I just watched the newest episodes of “The Good Wife” and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.” I’ve also been watching “Friends” on Netflix.
Q. All-time favorite TV show?
Q. What part of pop culture do you wish would just go away?
A. The Kardashians
Q. What do you do for fun?
A. Trying new restaurants and seeing movies are two of my favorite things to do with friends. I also really love to bake in my free time.
Q. If you could eat only one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A. Anything Italian, really. Probably lasagna or ravioli.
Q. What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
A. Moving to Los Angeles without a job or an apartment was really intimidating. It’s worked out for me so far though!
Q. Best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
A. “Whatever the problem, be part of the solution. Don’t just sit around raising questions and pointing out obstacles.”
—Tina Fey, Bossypants
The UCF community is in mourning after its second president, Trevor Colbourn, passed away on Jan. 13, at age 87.
Colbourn became the university’s president in 1978, when it was still known as Florida Technological University. It was upon his suggestion that the university was renamed to the University of Central Florida the same year.
He also established UCF’s football program, as well as the College of Arts and Sciences (now the College of Arts and Humanities, and the College of Sciences), the Office of Undergraduate Studies and the Honors program, among many others.
During his presidency, the campus increased in size with the building of the Wayne Densch Sports Center, the establishment of Greek Park, a library expansion, growth in residential housing, and the construction of new buildings for Fine Arts (later renamed Colbourn Hall), the College of Business and the College of Engineering. The arena, student union and Barbara Ying Center also went into planning.
After retiring as president in 1989, he returned to teaching history full time at the university. In 1990, he earned the title President Emeritus, and he assumed the role of university historian in 1991.
READ MORE about the legacy Trevor Colbourn created at UCF.
Each year, UCF Marketing publishes a facts guide, highlighting the university’s successes in numbers. Here are the facts for 2014-15:
UCF at First Glance
GROWTH WITH QUALITY AND DIVERSITY
- Fall 2014 freshman class set UCF records with an average SAT score of 1256 and an average high school GPA of 3.9.
- UCF set records for diversity in the fall: 41 percent of students are minorities and 22 percent are Hispanic.
- UCF is the nation’s second-largest university with 60,810 students, including 52,532 undergraduates, 7,858 graduate students and 420 M.D. students.
- UCF ranks second among Florida’s state universities with 275 National Merit Scholars enrolled.
- UCF’s six-year graduation rate is 69.7 percent, third best among Florida’s state universities.
PREPARING STUDENTS FOR THE WORKFORCE
- More than 20,000 students gain practical experience through co-ops, internships and service-learning projects annually.
- UCF awarded nearly 2,000 baccalaureate degrees in STEM fields in 2013-14, the second-largest number in the State University System.
- Career Services helped 30,000 students search and compete for jobs in 2013-14.
AN AFFORDABLE, BEST-VALUE EDUCATION
- 48 percent of UCF students graduate without any educational debt. Nationally, only 33 percent of students graduate debt-free.
- Kiplinger and The Princeton Review consistently rank a UCF education among the nation’s best value.
A LEADER IN ECONOMIC IMPACT
- UCF employs about 11,000 faculty and staff members. The university impacts more than 112,000 additional jobs and adds $7.73 billion of value to the economy, according to a 2009-10 study by the Florida Board of Governors.
Medical Professional: 420
Hispanic (21.6%), African-American (10.5%), Asian and Pacific Islander (5.7%) and Multiracial (3%)
$44.9 million awarded to Bright Futures students (second-largest amount in Florida)
77 percent of undergraduate students received financial aid
$437 million in financial aid awarded
275 National Merit Scholars enrolled, a UCF record
Fall Freshman Profile
Average SAT Score: 1256* (1849**)
Average ACT Score: 27.4
Average High School GPA: 3.9
Fall Freshman Profile, The Burnett Honors College
Average SAT Score: 1398* (2057**)
Average ACT Score: 31.5
Average High School Weighted GPA: 4.3
*Critical Reading and Mathematics
**Critical Reading, Mathematics and Writing
Degrees Conferred (as of Summer 2014)
Top 15 Majors by Enrollment
- Health Sciences: Pre-Clinical
- Biomedical Sciences
- Mechanical Engineering
- Hospitality Management
- Interdisciplinary Studies
- General Business
- Elementary Education
- Computer Science
- Criminal Justice
Cost of Attendance (estimated per semester†)
Tuition and fees: $2,972
Books and supplies: $573
Room and board: $4,879
Nonresident tuition and fees: $10,484
†Based on 14 undergraduate credit hours
The main campus is 1,415 acres, approximately one-third of which is managed for conservation.
- 180 buildings
- Housing: 11,593 beds (includes affiliated)
- Bright House Networks Stadium: 45,000-seat capacity
- CFE Arena: 10,000-seat capacity
2013-14: $145.6 million
UCF researchers have earned more than $1 billion in external grants and contracts during the past decade.
June 30, 2014: $155.5 million
2013-14: $1.5 billion
Faculty members: 1,961
Staff members: 9,113
- Center for Emerging Media
- Executive Development Center
- Florida Solar Energy Center
- Health Sciences Campus at Lake Nona
- Rosen College of Hospitality Management
Regional Campus Locations
- Altamonte Springs
- Daytona Beach
- Palm Bay
- Sanford/Lake Mary
- South Lake
- Valencia Osceola
- Valencia West
More than 235,000
Unless otherwise noted, figures are for Fall 2014.
- Offer the best undergraduate education available in Florida.
- Achieve international prominence in key programs of graduate study and research.
- Provide international focus to our curricula and research programs.
- Become more inclusive and diverse.
- Be America’s leading partnership university.
The goals are directions of travel. We’ve changed, and the way we pursue the goals has changed. —John C. Hitt
Benefits | Travel
The UCF Alumni Association has partnered with Contiki Vacations, the world’s No. 1 travel company for 18- to 35-year-olds, to offer both a European grad trip and optional excursion voucher ($50) for young alumni to use on a tour of eight or more days now through Oct. 10, 2015.
Take advantage of Contiki’s new year sale, group discounts, early payment discounts and last-minute deals on vacations in the USA and Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Latin America.
Whether it’s a senior trip celebrating a high school or college graduation, a quick break from work or an epic journey of a lifetime, Contiki has a vacation that’s perfect for everyone.
Email email@example.com or call 866.652.4483 for booking information.
Career Services: Networking
According to UCF Alumni’s career services coordinator, Leah Goldson, ’04, networking is the No. 1 way to gain employment. It’s a tactic she consistently promotes to alumni, but some are overwhelmed and intimidated by the act of networking.
During the “Journey to Success” workshop she hosted Jan. 6, she shared the “How to Work a Room” handout, above, which walks through how to navigate a networking event step by step. VIEW FULL SIZE IMAGE
With these tips, you can become an expert networker in any room!
Need help with your career?
- Let Leah help you with your resume, work on your interview skills, and more! Call 407.823.1965 to schedule an appointment.
- Join us Tuesday, Jan. 13, from 5-7:30 p.m., at the UCF FAIRWINDS Alumni Center, for our “Knight to Knight” career panel, featuring human resources professionals from Florida Hospital, Lockheed Martin, Enterprise Holdings and Siemens Corporation. LEARN MORE
- Visit our Career Services web page for more job search tools.
A few of our favorite stories from the past year
By Angie Lewis, ’03
As we prepare to bid farewell to 2014, we can’t help but reflect on all of the great UCF stories that have been shared over the last 12 months. Celebrating a new year with a BCS bowl win, welcoming more than 16,000 new alumni over three semesters of graduation ceremonies, getting to know an inspirational teacher, helping a little boy get a “robo-arm” and witnessing a Knights marriage proposal are enough to run the emotional gamete on their own. But, we’ve got more!
Here are our top 10 favorite stories of 2014:
10. Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
On Jan. 1, 2014, our Knights won their first-ever BCS bowl after defeating Baylor 52-42 in Glendale, Ariz. (Seems like a fitting story for our list of favorites, as our Knights play in their third-consecutive bowl, facing N.C. State in the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl on Dec. 26, after celebrating back-to-back AAC championships. Go Knights! Charge On!)
The UCF Alumni Association welcomed more than 5,000 new alumni during fall 2014 commencement ceremonies held Dec. 12-13. With these graduations, UCF has awarded more than 271,000 degrees since classes began in 1968. In total, the alumni association welcomed more than 16,000 new alumni in 2014, including spring and summer graduations.
8. The Origins of Pegasus Magazine
In 2014, Pegasus Magazine celebrated its 20th year in production. The inaugural issue in July 1994 was printed and mailed to 59,861 alumni. Today, the award-winning publication is sent to more than 205,000 (addressable) alumni. Pegasus was created by Tom Messina, ’84, along with fellow Knights Mike Hinn, ’92, and Jim Hobart, ’91.
7. Little Legacy
Marlie Kai Dodson dreamed of being a UCF Cheerleader and attending the College of Nursing. However, pediatric brain cancer claimed her life on Dec. 31, 2011, leaving behind a little legacy that would make a big impact. Thankful for the nurses who cared so much for her daughter, Marlie’s mom, Sarah Dodson, ’01, along with her family of other UCF Knights, established the Marlie Kai Dodson Endowed UCF Oncology Nursing Scholarship, which was awarded this year for the first time.
6. 180 Degrees
Although Jill Schenk, ’90, was an “American Gladiators” contestant, her spirit wasn’t as strong as her body. After struggling with addiction and attempting suicide, she was finally able to learn how to love herself, and now inspires her students as a teacher at San Diego High School.
5. Homecoming Highlights
Homecoming 2014 proved to be another exciting week of alumni and student events, including the Black & Gold Gala, Spirit Splash, Black & Gold Takeover, Golf Tournament, Indoor Tailgate, CECS BBQ/Reunion, and a repeat victory against Temple!
4. Magazine Names UCF Leaders, Alumni to Orlando’s Most-Powerful List
Five UCF leaders and several alumni were named to Orlando magazine’s 2014 list of the region’s 50 most powerful people.
3. Orlando’s University
UCF’s new downtown Orlando campus is in the works, and will be a “game changer” for the university, according to its top supporter, UCF President John Hitt.
Six-year-old Alex Pring received a new prosthetic arm, thanks to e-NABLE, an international organization that connects families with inventors and 3-D printer enthusiasts creating solutions for children with special needs. That’s where his mom, Alyson, met Albert Manero, ’12, an e-NABLE volunteer who would change their lives forever.
1. Proposal Knight
Having a brick engraved with “Marry Me?” was how Rob Brunjes, ’11, decided to propose to his longtime girlfriend, Michele McGlamory, ’10. Now, the Knights Terrace outside the UCF FAIRWINDS Alumni Center will always hold a special place in their hearts.
We hope you enjoyed our favorites as much as we did. Here’s to bigger and better stories in 2015!
With Knight Pride,
Your UCF Alumni Association Staff
When Jeff Tuttle, ’96, mission and technology manager for NASA’s Balloon Program Office, was sent to Antarctica for the space giant’s Antares rocket program, he made sure to pack one very important item (besides a parka!) — his UCF Knights flag, which he proudly displayed in front of Mt. Erebus.
Here’s some of what Tuttle shared with us about his experience on our planet’s southernmost continent:
McMurdo, the home of the U.S. Antarctic Program’s Long Duration Balloon Facility, is a minor city and, as such, has the amenities of all cities. It has a hospital (of sorts), where basic medicine can be administered. They cannot obviously perform any major operations, but there is a doctor on staff. And, they have a church, a cafeteria, and all kinds of recreation indoors and outdoors.
I joke a lot about the cafeteria, but really, the food is very good. Because we travel more than seven miles from McMurdo to our Long Duration Balloon Facility, we have individual chefs come out and prepare us food out there. We had smoked salmon the other day that I would find at any good restaurant. The cafeteria has two items available 24 hours: pizza and cookies.
The passing of the Antarctic Treaty and Antarctic Conservation Act in the U.S. brought several restrictions to U.S. activity on Antarctica. The introduction of alien plants or animals can bring a criminal penalty, as can the extraction of any indigenous species. Another part of this act involves waste management from both recycling and human waste. While this is not a popular subject in Antarctica (or elsewhere), it is part of the culture if you are staying here. No discussion of Antarctic life would be complete without some mention of the pee bottle.
McMurdo dorms and facilities, and Long Duration Balloon Facility have bathrooms. And, to be honest, the shower water is hotter than the water in my apartment in Chincoteague. But, if I were to go on a long hike or walk and have to use the bathroom, per law, I cannot use it outdoors on the ground. Urine or any other waste does not decompose here. It stays. I would have to collect the waste and return it to base for proper disposal. Thus, when going on long ventures, you either hold it or take an “official” waste cup.
McMurdo station is very much into recycling. Approximately 40 percent of all the waste in the station is recycled. That’s really an amazing statistic considering the isolation of the base from the real world. In every dorm and every building in McMurdo, there is a recycling depot. You empty your waste basket every week and place items in either plastic, aerosols, food waste, mixed paper, aluminum beverage, paper towels, glass and non-recyclables bins. There’s also a skua bin — named after an arctic bird that eats anything and hangs around the cafeteria waiting for someone to expose their food, and attacks — which is where people get rid of the things they don’t want. You’ll find shoes, jackets, shampoo and 1,000 other things there for the taking, mostly left by people lightning their load for the return trip.
Many thanks to Jeff for sharing his experience and representing his alma mater! Go Knights! Charge On!