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Since I joined UCF on July 30, no two of my days have been alike. My first month has included visiting student services areas and talking with students, attending the College of Medicine’s White Coat Ceremony, meeting with deans and other administrators in their offices, cheering for the Knights at the Countdown to Kickoff luncheon, meeting some of UCF’s finest researchers, attending a new faculty orientation, and addressing a Faculty Senate meeting.

One thing I learned quickly — it is apparent that our faculty and staff members are dedicated to their students, their work, and UCF. I have very much enjoyed talking with students who are excited about their activities at UCF and who care passionately about their university. I think we all notice the excitement and enthusiasm that envelop campus when students return for the fall semester.

Before coming to UCF, I read the five goals that President Hitt established for the university. It is clear to me that these are exactly the right ones for us, and I am eager to learn more about the many programs and partnerships that support these goals. UCF is an outstanding university, and I am proud to be here and to work with President Hitt in continuing to “reach for the stars.”

Since I arrived, many of you have asked me about the budget. While details are still unknown, the 2010-11 fiscal year will likely be another challenging one for UCF and for all state agencies. I will use the Provost’s Update e-mails to share with you budget-related news and other information as it becomes available throughout the year.

I am excited about being at UCF and look forward to meeting more of you. Thank you for your continuing commitment to our students and our university.