From support for an outreach program to interest students in aviation careers to funds that will help address the nationwide nursing shortage, donations of every dollar amount help UCF foster excellence and empower current and future students. Here are just a few of the generous donations the university benefitted from this year.

Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust Provides $250K for Aviation Careers Outreach Program
As the No. 1 provider of aerospace and defense talent for six years in a row, according to Aviation Week Network, UCF is committed to promoting aviation careers through education and outreach to attract students to the field.

The Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust awarded UCF a $250,000 grant to support the UCF STEM Aviation Showcase. Through traveling and installed exhibits, the program aims to promote STEM education and inspire young people to consider aviation careers for themselves. The exhibits feature flight simulators and funds will support programmatic expansion and development, including the addition of video interviews featuring female and minority pilots and aviation leaders, with a goal of enriching the talent pipeline.  Funding will expand showcases at events throughout the year — drawing over 150,000 attendees collectively — and support administration, operations, marketing, equipment purchase, and travel costs.

Sloan Foundation Gifts $250K to Support Hispanic STEM Grad Students
A Hispanic-Serving Institution, UCF supports the success of all Knights and aims to help Hispanic/Latino/a/x Knights unleash their potential.

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation provided $250,000 in philanthropic support for the Academic Consortium to Cultivate Engineering & Science Opportunities ― ACCESO ― a program that focuses on increasing the numbers and success rates of Latina/o/x graduate students in STEM majors. With the goal to foster success in STEM graduate programs (master’s and doctoral degree programs) and prepare students for careers in STEM, UCF will develop workshops to equip the project team and associated mentors with evidence-based strategies to best teach, support and assess Latino/a/x student success and foster institutional change.

$500K in Gifts to Expand The India Center at UCF and Help Establish Endowed Chair
The mission of The India Center at UCF is to broaden the awareness and understanding of India’s role in the world today. Established in 2012, the center hosts symposia and events of interest to the regional Indian American community and UCF students and faculty interested in India and its impact in Florida, the nation and the world.

Port Orange, Florida, residents Ramesh and Neena Chopra gifted $250,000 to UCF to support the Indian Community Endowed Chair for The India Center. The Chopra’s gift will be amplified by a $50,000 match from the university through the UCF Challenge.

Avista President and CEO Anil Valbh made his first gift to UCF, committing $250,000 to the fund for the endowed chair in support of the India Center at UCF. Having a desire to make a gift to UCF and support higher education, Valbh was introduced to the India Center by a friend and felt its goals aligned with his values, namely, the importance of education,  and family and cultural connections.

To date, donors have pledged more than $3 million of the $5 million needed for The India Center’s endowment to provide a secure source of funding to sustain its academic leadership, programs and operation in perpetuity.

Florida Blue Foundation Enhances UCF Healthcare Education with $1+ Million in Gifts
The Florida Blue Foundation enables healthy people and communities by addressing food security, health equity and mental well-being. To help promote health and well-being across Central Florida, the foundation donated $516,000 for the UCF College of Medicine Community Engaged Service-learning Initiative, through which UCF doctors-in-training provide assistance to locals in need and gain valuable experience in social medicine. The organization also provided $500,000 to establish the Florida Blue Endowed Professorship for Healthy Communities at UCF.

Anonymous Donors Contribute $5M — Largest Gift in UCF Athletics History — For Baseball and Football Programs
Now as a Big 12 member, UCF Athletics is in a new caliber of competition — with a need to provide the best support possible for student-athletes.

A former baseball student-athlete and his fellow alumna and wife  donated $5 million dollars, the largest gift in UCF Athletics’ history. The anonymous gift includes $4 million in support of UCF’s baseball program and more than $1 million for the Sharon and Marc Hagle Gateway to UCF’s Football Campus.

Knights Worldwide Set Record for UCF Day of Giving 2023
UCF Day of Giving brings Knights together each year to support causes across the university that mean the most to them — from student success to research and athletics.

For UCF Day of Giving 2023, Knights raised more than $6.8 million — an 84% increase from last year, and the most in university history. More than 9,550 gifts were made across all 50 U.S. states, as well as Australia, Canada, Colombia, Panama, Philippines, Serbia, South Korea and Trinidad and Tobago. The College of Arts and Humanities and Student Success and Well-Being Fund were among the top areas gifted to.

Local Healthcare Organizations and Foundations Contribute $16M to Help Create New UCF Nursing Facility — Supporting Local Workforce
To help alleviate the national nursing shortage and continue the growth of Lake Nona’s Medical City, UCF’s future new College of Nursing facility will allow the university to educate and better prepare more Knight Nurses.

Donors play a crucial role in assisting UCF in its goal to provide top healthcare support to Central Florida. Pegasus Partners AdventHealth and Orlando Health donated $5 million each towards the construction of a new UCF College of Nursing facility — the Dr. Phillips Nursing Pavilion — at Lake Nona that will enable the college to graduate hundreds of additional nurses annually who will care for patients throughout the region and state.

The Helene Fuld Health Trust committed a $5.5 million gift to the College of Nursing’s new education and teaching facility in Lake Nona. This funding will specifically support the creation of the state-of-the-art simulation center in the new building, a critical component to education and innovation. The Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation gifted $500,000 to the UCF College of Nursing building at Lake Nona’s Medical City, helping unleash the potential of more Knight nurses and bolstering the nursing workforce in Central Florida.

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