Archive for November, 2013

2013 Fall Kickoff Luncheon: Event Recap

November 5, 2013

September brought about a new season for Town & Gown Council at UCF with new members and wonderful events such as the President’s Focus on Excellence Breakfast, Fall Luncheon, and the beginning of the Dean’s Speaker Series. During the Fall Luncheon Town & Gown members enjoyed a delightful lunch, fellowship, and exciting updates for UCF. It is hard to believe that UCF has now reached a student population of 60,110, which makes our university the second largest in the country. Two hundred and forty-seven of those students are National Merit scholars, which is twice the number attending just two years ago. The housing administration has been working hard to make sure that every student who desires to live on campus has a place to call home. Since research shows that students who live on campus have a much higher graduation rate, the efforts to provide these housing opportunities will surely have long-term benefits for scholastic achievement.


Members also learned that UCF students are not simply confining themselves to the classroom. During the 2012-2013 academic year, UCF students contributed over 90,000 volunteer hours in the community. Those hours included a multitude of activities from beach clean-ups to food packing for the hungry. As two UCF students shared their experiences and excitement for volunteering and leadership, the pride in community and UCF spread throughout the room.

This enlightening update came on the coattails of President Hitt’s announcement that UCF will be changing its admission policy. In order to focus more on diverse and quality students, UCF will be focusing on students graduating in the top ten percent of their high school classes.

For information and to view President Hitt’s 2013 State of the Union Address:

It is clear that UCF is not slowing down during its 50th celebration, and Town & Gown will be there to spread the word on its accomplishments every step of the way. Thank you for your support, and see you on November 19th!


A Message from the President: Sara Segal

Town & Gown is all about forming connections between university and community and developing friendships among our far-flung members. Getting to know each other across the divides of time and place, occupations and experience can be a challenge. What a pleasure to see so many members and guests warmly greeted and reconnecting as they arrived for UCF Vice President Bill Merck’s annual campus tour and the Fall Kickoff Luncheon! For those who could not be there, a quick recap: President Hitt’s State of the University Address made headlines announcing a new admissions policy to a crowd at the UCF Student Union; however, he was unable to speak at our program due to a meeting convened by the Governor. In his place, Dr. Maribeth Ehasz, Vice President of Student Development and Enrollment Services, fascinated our group with a look at UCF’s student population and the vast array of services her department provides to empower their success. Thank you to Programs Committee chair Laura Pooser, the superb Constituent Relations team and our congenial Hospitality Committee, chaired by Johanna Clark and Teri Yanovitch, for making this event such a success.

Town & Gown members have gathered at several events since summer: a high-spirited UCF Football Countdown to Kickoff luncheon, the President’s Focus on Excellence Breakfast at the Church Street Ballroom and the College of Business Administration’s Dean’s Speaker Series breakfast at the Citrus Club. We were inspired by a heroic woman – Egyptian activist and award-winning film-maker -presented by UCF’s Global Perspectives Office. Each event was rich in ideas and the company of Town & Gown members.

Moving forward, our UCF Events Coordinator, Tiffany Hughes, will be targeting additional events – a few of the many and varied opportunities to experience UCF and get to know Town & Gown members. Check our calendar listing at and visit regularly to find what interests you – music, theater, sports, speakers… and take friends along. Hospitality is also planning some strictly social occasions, just for friendship and fun. We hope that the different times, locations and topics will be easy and inviting, with something of value for everyone.

I look forward to seeing you at our next program on November 19th and at other campus events. As we deepen friendships within Town & Gown, may this strengthen our commitment and sustain our efforts as ambassadors and bridge-builders for UCF and our community.

With appreciation for your participation,

Sara Segal

Sara Segal

UCF has a great story.

Know it. Share it.

Experience it. Enjoy it.