UCF’s Institute for Simulation and Training (IST) and several military agencies share the new Partnership III building in the Central Florida Research Park. The university and Department of Defense also share two other partnership buildings in the Research Park.

“The 230,000 square feet of shared space in these three buildings anchors the $2.5 billion local industry in simulation and training that contributes so greatly to the economic well-being of Central Florida,” said UCF President John Hitt. “With nearly 17,000 employees at more than 100 Central Florida companies, this industry is central to our region’s aggressive efforts at economic diversification and its bid for technologically advanced industries.”

Partnership III also will enhance the safety and security of U.S. armed forces and allow UCF and its partners to expand their research capabilities in such areas as medical simulation, high-performance computing and mobile applications for training.

In one example, UCF and military research focuses on improving medical care in the battlefield to save the lives of military personnel and civilians. Such research also benefits law enforcement officers and emergency health care providers.

“Partnership III is a fitting home for a world-class IST that is widely recognized as a major player on the international modeling and simulation stage,” Navy Rear Admiral Tim Alexander said.

During tours of the new building, IST researchers showcased a variety of research projects. One of those simulations helps future teachers prepare for the challenges of a classroom. Exhibits also included a driving simulator, museum exhibits about the Everglades and gravity, and a simulation of the 1964-65 World’s Fair in New York City.

The ceremony celebrated the opening of the building and the longstanding partnerships that have made Orlando a national hub for simulation and training.

Speakers included Dean Cannon, speaker-designate of the Florida House of Representatives, and retired State Senator and UCF Board of Trustees member Dan Webster, both of whom led efforts to secure state funding for the new building. Orange County Mayor Richard Crotty and state senators Lee Constantine and Thad Altman attended the ceremony.

Partnership III is a mirror image of Partnership II, located next door. The building’s general contractor was Clancy + Theys, and the architect was Schenkel Shultz.

IST and Department of Defense agencies have shared the Partnership II building since it opened in 2004 and Partnership I since 2000.