UPDATE: The Board of Trustees passed this resolution in July affirming the university’s commitment to build and operate the College of Dental Medicine without state money.
The University of Central Florida Board of Trustees approved the creation of a new College of Dental Medicine that will expand opportunities for local students, create jobs and help Central Floridians lead healthier lives. Trustees voted unanimously to move ahead with plans to build the college at the university’s Health Sciences Campus at the “medical city” in Lake Nona. UCF is not seeking state funding for the project.
The college is expected to create at least 110 permanent local jobs as well as an initial economic impact of $73 million from construction. Additional economic impacts will flow from the research opportunities available to the college. Some of that research will explore the links between dental and medical health.
The college also will benefit the community by providing services at its dental clinic to those who can least afford care.
The project still needs the state Board of Governors’ approval to move forward. UCF is striving to open the school in 2014 with a charter class of 60 students. There are currently only two fully accredited schools with students in Florida.
In other action Thursday, the Board of Trustees:
Approved a partnership agreement with Brevard Community College that would make WUCF-TV the primary PBS affiliate in Central Florida. Pending PBS’ approval, which could come next week, UCF and Brevard Community College will work together to begin offering PBS’ flagship programming on WUCF-TV on July 1.
Approved tuition rates that will take effect in the fall. For undergraduates, the tuition increase will include an 8 percent increase set by the state and a 7 percent increase in “differential tuition” approved by UCF’s trustees. Differential tuition revenues are spent on need-based financial aid and on directly enhancing undergraduate student learning. The tuition increase for graduate students will be 8 percent. UCF has been named one of the nation’s best values by Kiplinger and the Princeton Review, and tuition costs at Florida’s public universities rank 48th in the country.
Approved trustee ermeritus status for charter trustees Judy Albertson and Phyllis Klock. President Hitt presented Albertson and Klock with plaques recognizing their many years of dedicated service to the university. Hitt also recognized outgoing trustee Joe Mantilla for his service to the university.
Welcomed to the board newly appointed trustees Richard T. Crotty, Alan S. Florez and John R. Sprouls and new student body president Matthew McCann.
Recognized two Conference USA championship teams: women’s track and men’s golf. Trustees also praised the football team for posting a record 2.844 GPA during the spring semester. Fifty-five players posted a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Honored Pegasus Professors Kevin Belfield of Chemistry and Ranganathan Kumar of Mechanical, Materials and Aerospace Engineering.
Praised Professor Henry Daniell for earning a $761,302 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a polio vaccine.
Recognized retiring College of Sciences Dean Peter Panousis and College of Business Administration Dean Thomas Keon, who will become chancellor of Purdue University Calumet on July 1.
Recognized several UCF students who served as legislative scholars interning in Central Florida state representatives’ and senators’ offices this spring.