Five Things Alumni Need to Know this Week – May 13, 2019

1. There are 108 days left until the next season of UCF football. The hype is real and the momentum is building and we have less than 1,000 season tickets remaining. Get your head in the game now and ensure you don’t miss a single phenomenal moment in Spectrum Stadium this year.

2. Our women’s golf team is heading to the NCAA National Championships on Wednesday morning. The Knights crushed it at the NCAA Elum Regional in Washington on May 8, racking up a combined score of 874. “The grit our team showed on that back 9 today was unbelievable. We kept telling them all week to believe, just believe,” UCF head coach Emily Marron says. 

3. “Many kids say they want to work with animals when they grow up. But only a small number of them are willing to scrub poop out of animal enclosures to reach that dream. Katelyn O’Rourke ’14 was among those willing to do anything. Now the psychology alumna’s hard work is paying off with a career that includes hosting an animal-actor show at Universal Orlando and visiting commercial and movie sets. ‘I pushed myself to get where I am,’ O’Rourke says. ‘It’s a hard business to get into, but you can do it if you’re willing to work hard.’” Read more here.

4. From April 29-May 3, four UCF students participated in the NPR News’ national training program, NextGen Radio. The program is a week-long “pop-up” digital journalism training experience and the theme of the week’s stories was immigration.

“Rick Brunson ’84, associate instructor in the Nicholson School, represented the university in the partnership and is mentoring one of the students. ‘We are fanning out around Central Florida to locate, capture and tell the stories of immigrants who have arrived here and are making a new life,’ he says. ‘The training is highly structured with tutorials in audio reporting, web production, social media production, photography, video and more. Our stories will be richly layered, textured and multimedia in nature.’” Read more here.

5. Jason Smith is one of the 8,300 people who joined the UCF Alumni family last weekend and he already has big plans to put his degree to work. This week he starts his work as a UCF-trained psychiatrist caring for patients at Osceola Regional Medical Center and at the Orlando VA. Read about his unconventional path to getting his M.D. degree right here.

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