Prudential Productivity Award



Two teams have been recognized with the 2016 Prudential Productivity Award at a luncheon held at the Buena Vista Palace in Orlando on June 23, 2016. The Prudential Productivity Award is sponsored by Florida TaxWatch and is held to honor state employees who innovatively reduce costs and improve services for Florida taxpayers.


According to Florida TaxWatch President and CEO, Dominic Calabro, “State workers hardly get the praise and honor they deserve for a job well done, and this program ensures that the taxpayers are noticing their contributions, and are thankful for all that our public servants are doing to make Florida a great place to get a job, raise a family and start a business.”


See full criteria here »



UCF-MAYO Mini Symposium


A Mini-Symposium exploring collaboration opportunities between UCF and Mayo-Jacksonville was held on Friday, May 13, 2016. Topics and speakers were selected by Mayo, and the full Symposium Agenda is available online. We are hoping that this symposium is a step toward developing more extensive collaboration with Mayo scientists and UCF science and engineering faculty.  A major outcome of the symposium is the Mayo Clinic - University of Central Florida (UCF) Pilot Project Program.

Presentations from the Symposium are now available:




Cookin' With MJ - Return to Faculty Edition - June, 2016


In a column printed in the Office of Research & Commercialization's 2002 annual report, I spelled out a recipe for developing a strong research culture at our university.

1. The key ingredient is a
     skilled faculty of scientists and engineers
     internationally respected as leaders in their

2. Add a strong pro-partnership mentality.


3. Take care of sensitive issues (like
     intellectual property) up front with an eye
     to enlightened self-interest and fairness.

4. Add a company partner that embraces
     items two and three above and is willing to
     invest in the university.

5. Listen to what the community needs.

6. Laissez les bons temps rouler! (Let the good
     times roll!)


In 2016 I feel compelled to add a step:

5.5 - Celebrate achievements by our faculty
          and students as recognized by their
          peers worldwide.

As I prepare to return to the faculty of CREOL - The College of Optics & Photonics after 18 years of leading UCF's research enterprise I want to share some final thoughts with my fellow faculty, with the staff that have so ably served in our office, and with my successor.

We have grown comfortable with the notion that the primary reason a university exists is to educate students and equip them to succeed in life.  We have accepted the additional mission of helping to grow our regional and state economy to help create good jobs for graduates.  Let's make sure this remains true.

Faculty members are the workhorses of the institution.  As we have grown into the nation's second largest university, despite some lean years of budget shortfalls, hiring freezes, and travel restrictions, our faculty have stood on the front lines adapting to increasing workloads and the shared responsibilities of conducting research and disseminating results.  Collectively they secure financial support for our students, as well as funds for the research portion of their education (equipment, materials, travel, etc.)  Of course they provide the formal instruction of the students, one-on-one mentoring in subject matter and professionalism, and help them secure employment. During the period of 2007 to 2012 UCF's state base budget was reduced by 49 percent, or $144M.  In the same period UCF's enrollment increased by 22 percent (over 10,000 additional students).  This was followed by gridlock in Washington DC and budget sequestration that resulted in fewer dollars available for research.  Our faculty soldiered on and during this period UCF advanced to Carnegie I status (Very High Research Activity).  Let's look out for our faculty.


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