Skip to main content

World-Renowned Faculty

Bright minds are solving the world’s greatest problems right here at UCF. It’s one of the reasons we’re positioned to become the world’s leading public metropolitan university. To achieve this vision, we continuously work to bring together thinkers, doers and creators who deliver high-quality education and leading-industry research that transforms lives. The impact of our innovative faculty research and teaching excellence extends far beyond our walls, unleashing a ripple effect that benefits our region, nation and world. From the interesting and heartwarming to the ground-breaking and life-changing, our research initiatives are helping change course for the future.

Portrait of Alicja Copik, PhD

Alicja Copik, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Associate Professor of Medicine Alicja Copik and her team developed a way to stimulate and strengthen natural cancer-killing cells as a means of cancer treatment. In July 2020, the nanoparticle technology was licensed to Sanofi — a French pharmaceutical giant — in hopes of finding new blood-cancer treatments.

Learn about the innovative treatment

Portrait of John Fauth, PhD

John Fauth, PhD

Associate Professor of Biology

UCF engineering and biology researchers teamed up to test how well staghorn coral skeletons withstand the forces of nature and humans, such as impacts from hurricanes and divers. The findings help inform efforts to successfully transplant nursery-reared coral into the wild.

Explore our restoration efforts

Portrait of Kareem Ahmed, PhD

Kareem Ahmed, PhD

Associate Professor of Engineering

UCF researchers are building on their technology that could pave the way for hypersonic flight. Associate Professor Kareem Ahmed and his team’s experimental engine funnels a mixture of fuel and air at hypersonic speeds toward a perfectly angled ramp. The resulting combustion is extra efficient and creates a shock wave that is essentially frozen in place for a record-breaking three seconds, allowing its energy to be harnessed for unprecedented propulsion.

Find out more about the technology

Recent UCF Faculty Awards

At UCF, we are proud of our award-winning faculty. Many are recognized leaders in their disciplines — receiving awards from professional societies, foundations and other organizations. It demonstrates the impact that they have both inside and outside of the classroom. Here are just several of the most recent faculty awards.

National Science Foundation CAREER Awards

National Science Foundation Logo

Innovation and Impact in Teaching and Research

US News Rankings Most Innovative College

Healthcare Simulation Educator of the Year

Mindi Anderson UCF Faculty

Mindi Anderson, Ph.D.

Healthcare Simulation Program Director, Simulation Research Coordinator, Professor

Professor Mindi Anderson, inaugural director of UCF’s Healthcare Simulation graduate program in the College of Nursing, was named 2020 Educator of the Year by the International Society for Simulation in Healthcare.

Learn more about Anderson’s accomplishments

Recognized for Inspiring Academic Excellence

National Academy of Engineering (NAE) Member

Professor Peter Delfyett, PhD received one of the highest honors bestowed on scientists and engineers: Becoming an NAE member. The first current UCF faculty member to be inducted into the NAE, Delfyett continues to receive national recognition for his work in optics and photonics.

Reach for the Stars Honorees

UCF faculty members were recognized for their outstanding research and creative activity, which has had national and international impact. From space to sea, these faculty have tackled huge problems and conducted research that betters society.

2021 Pegasus Professors

The university’s highest faculty honor is awarded to professors for their well-established careers at UCF, with national and international recognition for their impact on their area of expertise. They leave a lasting impact on students, their colleagues and our world.

Diversity Drives Innovation

Our university benefits from a diverse faculty. With more than 1,900 faculty representing 36 countries, UCF offers an inclusive environment for all. And while we all come from diverse backgrounds, we share a common goal — to empower and prepare students for the future of work and lifelong careers.

We believe innovation comes from the meeting of diverse viewpoints. It transforms how we teach, learn and engage — all while staying committed to a constant pursuit of academic, inclusive and operational excellence. Our faculty are innovative researchers, global thought leaders, analytical thinkers and renowned scholars. And together, we will continue to drive change and reach for the stars.


Faculty, including full time, part time and visiting


Research funding received in grants, gifts and sponsored awards


Faculty tenured. An additional 16.8% are on a tenure-earning track


Faculty have doctoral degrees

Research in 60 Seconds

Faculty and student researchers are solving many of today’s greatest challenges. And now, we’re sharing our knowledge with the world. The “Research in 60 Seconds” series offers a quick glimpse into some of the latest innovative work that’s transforming the future today.

Explore Research in 60 Seconds

UCF Podcast: Faculty Research Has a Global Impact

Produced by UCF, the Knights Do That podcast features students, faculty, staff and alumni who continue to push the needle forward as researchers, innovators, entrepreneurs and creators making an impact on the world. Subscribe to keep up with Knights doing incredible things. Join the conversation on social media using #KnightsDoThat.

apple podcast icon google podcasts icon pocketcasts icon radio public icon spotify icon

Featured Episodes

Phil Metzger UCF Podcast Episode 14

The Future of Space Exploration

Nov. 29, 2021

Phil Metzger ’00MS’05PhD, a planetary scientist with nearly 30 years of experience at NASA, shares stories from working on the space shuttle missions, his controversial research on whether Pluto is a planet and the future of space exploration.

Elena Cyrus UCF Podcast Episode 13

Expertise on Infectious Diseases and Vaccines

Nov. 15, 2021

Elena Cyrus, an infectious disease epidemiologist at UCF’s College of Medicine, discusses her expertise and research in infectious diseases, public health and COVID-19 vaccines.

Martha Brenkle UCF Podcast Episode 11

Fostering Inclusion through Arts and LGBTQ+ History

Oct. 18, 2021

Martha Brenckle, a writing and rhetoric professor, shares her expertise and love for writing, involvement within the Orlando arts community, role as treasurer for the LGBTQ+ History Museum of Central Florida and more.

UCF Fosters Creativity Through Tech

Forward-thinking researchers like Stella Sung explore how technology provides greater artistic freedom to enrich lives.

Explore her formula for art + tech

Faculty Research Clusters

By leveraging our existing strengths, the faculty cluster initiative encourages interdisciplinary approaches to the world’s most pressing challenges. Each cross-disciplinary team focuses on solving scientific and societal challenges through teaching and research.

The strength of this initiative comes from faculty depth, the ability to translate depth across disciplines and the collaboration among deans, directors, chairs and faculty members in every college across campus.

Explore UCF’s 9 Interdisciplinary Research Initiatives:

A Leader in Teaching Innovation

For more than 25 years, UCF has been at the forefront of digital learning. Our faculty continuously find ways to incorporate technology in a meaningful way. From building inclusive courses to designing for accessibility, faculty set students on the path to success. And as online instruction becomes increasingly important in higher education institutions, we will continue to adapt to the needs of students.

Our faculty’s commitment to leading the way in innovative education technology has helped UCF gain national recognition for online learning. The Chronicle for Higher Education says, “The University of Central Florida provides perhaps the best example of an institution that has done this. Its Digital Learning Division manages not just the UCF Online program but also a broad-based faculty-development program supporting educational-technology use in online, remote, hybrid, and face-to-face courses.”

Dedicated to Faculty Success

At UCF, we believe in the power of teamwork. From teaching technologies and professional development to research mentoring and work-life balance, UCF faculty are supported across campus through a variety of offices and centers aimed to help them achieve more. Access to resources, partnerships and industry all play a significant role in strengthening faculty success in the classroom, research lab and beyond.

Faculty Excellence

Supports faculty with professional development tools and resources to succeed in their career. From workshops to promotion/tenure guidance to faculty awards, we’re here to help faculty at every step.

Office of Research

A team of experts to assist faculty with research activity. The office has the tools, resources and support needed to help the research community throughout the lifecycle of a sponsored award.

Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning

Assists with teaching and development needs to innovate the classroom. FCTL also offers different faculty support groups, a writing club and development conferences.

UCF Libraries

Access to thousands of electronic full-text journals and documents on a diverse range of subjects. Libraries also offer faculty support with subject and campus librarians to find exactly what they need for the lab or classroom.

Center for Distributed Learning

Access to thousands of electronic full-text journals and documents on a diverse range of subjects. Libraries also offer faculty support with subject and campus librarians to find exactly what they need for the lab or classroom.

Office of Access & Community Engagement

Facilitates workshops and various development programs for faculty, such as the Leadership Empowerment Program and session on inclusion and curriculum transformation.

invest in research including space exploration, cybernetics, protecting coastal systems, curing diseases, creating sustainable energy and more

Invest in Research & Educators

Contribute to a healthier and more vibrant society. UCF faculty members help UCF expand its program offerings and adapt to the new fields of study and career paths that are emerging every day.

Give Now

Arts & Culture
Celebrating the Lunar New Year
Two associate professors with expertise in Chinese society and culture share the history behind the holiday, lucky foods and more about the Year of the…
Student Life
New Poster Printer Helps UCF Graduate Students, Faculty Share Their Research
Located in the Graduate Student Center in Trevor Colbourn Hall, the large-scale poster printer will make it easier for Knights to share their research.
Science & Technology
UCF Researchers Are Contributing to World Oceans Day
At UCF, researchers are studying a wide range of ways to improve ocean health, from patented soil that can remove up to 90% of pollutants…

Teaching and Research Opportunities

Located in Orlando, Florida, UCF and its 13,000 faculty and staff members create life-changing opportunities for more than 68,000 students on campus and online.

UCF offers a variety of positions for academic leaders, talented professionals and passionate team players who share our goal of creating a diverse and inclusive environment fueled by innovation and partnerships.

What really attracted me is that UCF is a vibrant place that fosters innovation, partnerships and unique initiatives centered in student and faculty success.”

Carolina Cruz-Neira, Agere Chair Professor

What really attracted me is that UCF is a vibrant place that fosters innovation, partnerships and unique initiatives centered in student and faculty success.”

Carolina Cruz-Neira, Agere Chair Professor

Thirteen colleges. Unlimited possibilities.

At UCF, we offer an array of academic options for just about every interest. Check out our 240+ degree programs, award-winning faculty and groundbreaking research. You’ll quickly discover all there is to experience and learn at one of the nation’s most innovative universities.

Arts and Humanities
Burnett Honors
Community Innovation and Education
Engineering and Computer Science
Health Professions and Sciences
Optics and Photonics
Rosen College of Hospitality Management
Graduate Studies
Undergraduate Studies