Leading the Charge
“If we’re going to be the entrepreneurial, innovative, forward-thinking institution we aspire to be, we’re going to have to do things like this to generate ideas — the kind of ideas that can change the world.”
– Nelson Marchioli ‘72
Spring 2018 Marchioli Collective Impact Innovation Award Winner
Dr. Deborah Beidel joined UCF faculty in 2007. Four years later, the Pegasus professor of psychology and medical education founded UCF RESTORES, which has changed hundreds of lives since its inception. Through virtual reality, patients are confronted with triggers. They see bombs detonate and smell smoke or gunfire. It’s like being on the front lines in Iraq or Afghanistan, but instead patients are on UCF’s campus.
Since it opened, the clinic has provided no-cost therapy to more than 300 veterans and active duty military and more recently, worked with first responders and victims of mass shootings. Their work has earned national praise and support, including receiving part of the largest alumni gift and being named the winner of the Spring 2018 Marchioli Collective Impact Innovation Award for “creating community impacts through partnerships.”
Fall 2017 Marchioli Collective Impact Innovation Award Winner
Finding a better way is at the core of UCF’s beliefs. It’s also what led Dr. Ronald DeMara to win UCF’s second Marchioli Collective Impact Innovation Award for developing a college-wide testing and tutoring center that’s helping students learn better.
DeMara founded the Evaluation and Proficiency Center (EPC). Originally a pilot program in DeMara’s undergraduate electrical engineering class, the EPC is now a 120-seat, college-wide teaching facility that has benefited thousands of students and assists more than 20 faculty members. It has revolutionized testing and tutoring for computer engineering and computer science and soon could be expanded to other STEM fields across the university.
Spring 2017 Marchioli Collective Impact Innovation Award Winner
The desire to help brought Dr. Jennifer Kent-Walsh to UCF in 2003, and is also what made her the winner of UCF’s first award based on the new Collective Impact Strategic Plan, which is designed to recognize and reward ideas that help advance the university through innovation.
By founding the Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology (FAAST) Center at UCF, Kent-Walsh has made the simple dream of communicating a reality for many with significant speech impairments. The clinic, which has an overarching goal of academic and clinical teaching, research and service, is able to help community members gain a “voice,” while training the next generation of speech-language pathologists.
| Questions? Contact Dr. Lisa Guion Jones at Lisa.Jones@ucf.edu