Page 1

The Magazine of the University of Central Florida




BIG issue

2 / SUMMER 2012


Hello, UCF. No matter how

much we change —and change is a big part of

who we are—


reminds us of what


love about


Monifa Sealy, freshman legal studies major, perfects her golf swing at the Twin Rivers Golf Club in Oviedo, Fla. Sealy and her teammates placed second at the 2012 C-USA Championships. P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 3





Michael J. Grindstaff, ’78


John C. Hitt


Tony G. Waldrop


John F. Schell


W. Scott Cole Helen Donegan Maribeth Ehasz Deborah C. German Alfred G. Harms, Jr. Robert J. Holmes, Jr.




M.J. Soileau

Big Stuff

The Big Game, Big on Broadway, Big Time

12 On Campus

Daniel Holsenbeck William F. Merck II


 obel winners, captains of industry ... N and an underwear run for charity

14 From the Archives

16 Faculty Spotlight

The smell of war; student success

18 Is Bigger Better?

UCF grows up.

24 Big Picture

Things are bigger in ... Orlando?

Plus Overheard on Facebook

Todd Stansbury

26 24 4 / SUMMER 2012









University of Central Florida EDITOR IN CHIEF

Terry Helms A S S O C I AT E E D I T O R

Michelle Fuentes C R E AT I V E D I R E C T O R


Tom Hope, ’09 ART DIRECTOR





Sandy Pouliot WEB EDITOR

Patrick Burt, ’08 ONLINE PRODUCER


Chris Conover, ’11 Jo Greybill, ’10 CONTRIBUTING EDITOR


Kim Capps Jeremy Daniel Regan Dunnick Mark Freid Lauren Haar, ’06 Marc Harmon Jonathan Kolbe Diane Levine Angie Lewis, ’03 Peg Martin Larry Moore Richard Termine Rick Walsh, ’77, ’83 Susan White PEGASUS ADVISORY BOARD

26 Big Enough

 arris Rosen spent the first half of his career making H millions and the second half giving away millions.

30 Nano

Making the most of a micro budget

40 AlumKnights

Will the science of small ever have its big moment?

34 Big Shot

36 Big Screen, Tiny Budgets Alumni notes and announcements

46 Back in the Day

Homecoming horseplay

A doctor in training needles his instructor.

Cover: Dr. Sudipta Seal holds a microchip fitted with nanoparticles. C O N TA C T U S



Barb Abney, ’03 April Brown Michael Griffin, ’84 Mike Hinn, ’92 Valarie Greene King Tom Messina, ’84 Elizabeth Wardle Suhtling Wong

Email Mail UCF Marketing P.O. Box 160090 Orlando, FL 32816-0090 Phone 407.823.2621 Fax 407.823.2567 Pegasus is published by UCF Marketing in partnership with the UCF Foundation, Inc. and the UCF Alumni Association. Opinions expressed in Pegasus are not necessarily those shared by the University of Central Florida.


©2012 UCF all rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited. Pegasus is a registered trademark of the UCF Alumni Association.

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 5


6 / SUMMER 2012



Like coaches and players, on game day Alex Martins has a job to do.

His off-court duties include listening to and connecting with fans while representing the Magic with the humility of his boss, Chairman Rich DeVos. How’s he doing? The 2010–2011 season was the most successful business year in the history of the franchise. From student assistant in the Villanova sports information department to Magic CEO, Martins is a proven winner.

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 7




Rachel Potter stars as the mistress in the Broadway performance of

“EVITA.” Potter made her Broadway debut as Wednesday Addams in “The Addams Family,” opposite Brooke Shields and Roger Rees. Her credits also include the “Wicked” national tour, MTV’s “Legally Blonde: The Search for Elle Woods,” “High School Musical” and LaChiusa’s “The Wild Party.” Potter is also an avid songwriter and country music singer. In 2002, she released a solo Christian album of original songs titled “Come Back Home.”

8 / SUMMER 2012



L E F T T O R I G H T : Jackie Hoffman as Grandma, Zachary James as Lurch, Roger Rees as Gomez, Rachel Potter as Wednesday, Brooke Shields as Morticia, Brad Oscar as Uncle Fester and Adam Riegler as Pugsley in the Broadway musical comedy “The Addams Family” at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre.

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 9



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BIG TIME From Jesse Owens to Usain Bolt, the Penn

Relays have hosted track and field’s elite since 1895. And since 2008, head coach Caryl Smith Gilbert has taken UCF to the relays. This year, 16 UCF track athletes participated. Jackie Coward, Octavious Freeman and Aurieyall Scott also used the event to perfect their fitness for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials, where they, along with alumna Tiki James, ’10, will try to become UCF’s first Olympic track athletes. The trials begin June 21. P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 11





Alexandra Cousteau, granddaughter of oceanographer and filmmaker Jacques-Yves Cousteau, visited UCF during its annual Summit on Environment and Global Climate Change.





Hundreds of students ran through campus nearly naked after donating 1,400 pounds of clothing to Goodwill in the 3rd Annual Undie Classic organized by Sigma Nu fraternity.

Cortez Whatley and Rachel Brill were elected 20122013 president and vice president, respectively, of the Student Government Association.

SAVE THE DATE Thursday, Nov. 1 Black & Gold Gala UCF Arena, 6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 2 Black & Gold Day Everywhere, all day!

Homecoming Golf Tournament The Villas of Grand Cypress Golf Club, 7:30 a.m. registration; 8 a.m. shotgun start



Black & Gold Takeover Downtown Orlando, 9 p.m.–midnight or 407.823.2586 Saturday, Nov. 3 Homecoming Parade UCF Main Campus, Time TBD

Meg Crofton, president of Walt Disney World Resort, spoke with students from The Burnett Honors College. Crofton is among the newest members of the University of Central Florida’s Board of Trustees.

Indoor Tailgate Party UCF FAIRWINDS Alumni Center, Time TBD or 407.823.2586 Homecoming Football Game UCF vs. SMU Bright House Networks Stadium, Time TBD or 407.823.1000 PHOTO BY SGA

12 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2





Nobel Laureates Charles Townes, (pictured at the FAIRWINDS Alumni Center), Nicolaas Bloembergen and John Hall were on hand to help celebrate the 25th anniversary of UCF’s Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers (CREOL).



This year, GreenWaves, UCF’s annual “green” event, incorporated a POWERleap dance floor, which utilized piezoelectric technology to convert the crowd’s kinetic energy into reusable energy for the concert.



The College of Sciences welcomed 1996 Chemistry Nobel Laureate Sir Harold Kroto to UCF as a presenter in its Distinguished Speaker Series. Professor Kroto gave a lecture titled “Carbon in Nano and Outer Space.” PHOTO BY LAUREN HAAR, ’06

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 13


FROM THE ARCHIVES Originally, the only UCF publication known as Pegasus was the

yearbook. Published from 1970 to 1973, and from 1980 to 1982, with a final edition in 1989, it chronicled the changing times—and styles—of student life. This photo, from the second edition, features the yearbook staff apparently in the good-humored throws of psychedelia. Printed yearbooks are largely a thing of the past for most colleges, but as a window into an era, Pegasus is invaluable.

1 9 7 1 P E G A S U S S T A F F : Editor-in-chief: Ronald D. Page, ’73; associate editor: Susan Conner, ’72; business manager: Sharon Warren, ’78; director of publications: Todd Persons; October co-editors: Brenda Bailey, ’78; Ronnie Malatesta, ’87; November/December co-editors: Maryke Loth, ’73; Gene Warner, ’72; January/February co-editors: Patty Gray, ’85; David Waterman, ’74; March/May editor: JoAnne Puglisi, ’73; May editor: Claudine Payne, ’71; June editor: Diane Pike, ’73; photographers: Randy Drake, ’75; Steve Heitzner, ’72; Chuck Seithel, ’74; Dorie Baker, ’72; Greg Jarvie, ’74; Scott Laing, ’73; Duncan Marks, ’73; Hal Stokes.


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OVERHEARD Keep up to date on what’s going on at UCF, connect with old friends,

and read and comment on posts about sports, academics, history, research and any other topic that UCF touches (which is pretty much everything). Join the conversation at

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 15



VIRTUAL SIGHTS, SOUNDS . . . AND SMELLS OF WAR Olfaction is one thing that distinguishes UCF’s Trauma Management Therapy (TMT) Program from other post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatment programs.

Dr. Deborah Beidel, director of the UCF Anxiety Disorders Clinic, uses olfactory stimulants such as “Moroccan marketplace,” “body odor” and “weapon fire” to stimulate the same part of the brain (the limbic system) that handles memories and emotions.

“On our diagnostic scale, the average score before treatment was 80, which indicates severe PTSD,” says Beidel. “After treatment, the average dropped to 40. That’s going from ‘I’m having nightmares every night’ to ‘I have a nightmare once a month.’” Beidel and her team use stimulants to replicate traumatic events experienced by PTSD sufferers. Visual, audio and tactile components are also used, but according to Beidel’s patients, smell acts as the most powerful trigger.

16 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

“The point is not to make people comfortable with these events, but to decrease the emotion that has gone along with them,” says Beidel. “So someone stops being afraid to drive under an overpass because it triggers a reaction related to a bridge attack they lived through in Iraq.” John, a soldier who is halfway through treatment, says, “I think the program will give me insight and tools to deal with my anxieties. I’ve just gotten to the point where I can sit in a restaurant without having to face the door.”

While TMT was designed as a 17-week program, the U.S. Army recently granted an additional $1.5 million to UCF to develop a threeweek intensive program for active-duty soldiers. The grant’s coverage includes patient lodging, which enables soldiers from across the country to participate. The researchers plan to accept a total of 180 soldiers for treatment, and are now taking applications. For more information, visit F



hy bring students here if you’re not going to help them be successful?” asks Wayne Jackson.

When you’re helping thousands of students, one at a time, there’s no shortage of success stories. Recent MASS achievements include:

There are approximately 11,000 UCF students who are the first in their families to go to college. “Some students almost come in blindfolded. They don’t know where to look,” says Jackson.

• Lunch and Learn, a program that encourages students to invite a faculty member to lunch. Getting to know faculty members builds confidence, helps students network, gives them an ally when recommendation letters are needed and may give them the inside track on job opportunities. More than 100 students participated in the program in its first year.

Jackson’s Multicultural Academic and Support Services (MASS) team serves as a student’s eyes and ears, and as a mentor, collaborator and friend. And in this case, multicultural truly means representing all cultures, including first-generation college students.

Jackson’s team makes the complex simple.

“We try to do two things really well: Help students stay in school and prep them for life after school. Life after school is either graduate school or their career,” he says.

“I want students to look back years from now and say that going to UCF was one of the best decisions they ever made.”

• Summer internships, like the last two MASS helped secure: One student will study medicine at Duke University Medical Center and another will study homelessness at Michigan State University before returning to UCF in the fall.

“Life is all about relationships,” says Jackson.

Jackson’s job is also to meet as many employers as possible. He has created a Community Advisory Board with local heavyweights such as Target, The Boeing Company, Walt Disney World, Orlando Magic, State Farm and Orange County Government. Employers assist students with internships, scholarships, a speaker series, relationship building, communication and leadership skills. “I want students to look back years from now and say that going to UCF was one of the best decisions they ever made.” F

Wayne Jackson, Director, Multicultural Academic and Support Services P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 17


Is Bigger Better?

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58,587 The elephant in the room is a number. 58,587. That number,

or perhaps the fact that the University of Central Florida is the second-largest university in the country, is what most people know about UCF.


I f UCF was a city, it would be larger than Winter Park and Oviedo—combined.

UCF’s size is the one thing that is difficult to avoid when you ask people for their impressions of the university. Of course, Americans like big. Big buildings. Big corporations. So, why not a big university?


 e UCF student body could fill the world’s Th largest cruise ship more than nine times.

What people think of UCF’s size depends on who is talking. That number may be stated with a sense of superiority. Or skepticism. Many are positively boastful about UCF’s rapid growth. (UCF opened in 1968 with fewer than 2,000 students.) For them, that number is a measure of success.


I t would take four Empire State Buildings to house all of UCF’s students.

The skeptics, however, will tell you that size is irrelevant. They will tell you that, despite its great size, UCF has not yet had a great impact. They will tell you that other things are more important than size. Research funding. Endowments. Sports championships. They will even speculate that the rapid growth has come at a price.


 hen it comes to that number, there are W those who think it means everything, and those who are certain it means nothing. Both groups are wrong.

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 19


PEOPLE’S CHOICE Each year, more and more students trust UCF to prepare them for graduate school or their careers.

58,587 STUDENTS*


UF 50,000 USF

FIU 40,000 FSU



20,000 ’96 ’97 ’98 ’99 ’00 ’01 ’02 ’03 ’04 ’05 ’06 ’07 ’08 ’09 ’10 ’11


Changing the Subject

When you travel the country promoting

Orlando, you can get a sense of how UCF is viewed by others. Leslie Hielema, president and CEO of Orlando, Inc. (Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce), confirms that the prevailing perception is all about size. “They either know that UCF is the second-largest university in the country or that UCF is huge.” As Hielema acknowledges, people talk about UCF’s size because so much has been written about its growth (the Google search term “UCF second-largest school in the nation” yields 162,000 results). But while UCF’s immense enrollment figure casts a big shadow, that isn’t the only number that people should be talking about. These are equally striking: “Between 1999 and early 2009, the UCF Business Incubation Program facilitated the growth and development of at least 100 new high-tech companies in the Central Florida region.” (2009 Real Estate Research Consultants report) 20 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

We need to get the message out that big isn’t bad. We need to tell the story of what big means, why it’s a benefit. MARIBETH EHASZ VICE PRESIDENT OF STUDENT DEVELOPMENT AND ENROLLMENT SERVICES

In 2010, UCF was ranked third in the “Patent Power Rankings” by the IEEE, the world’s leading professional association for the advancement of technology. And, according to the U.S. News & World Report 2012 best colleges ranking, UCF is the No. 4 “up-and-coming” school in the country. Despite this critical acclaim, parents of prospective students are still acutely aware of the size of the university, says Gordon Chavis, associate vice president for undergraduate admissions, student financial assistance and

student outreach programs. When questioned, however, his response is simple, “I tell them that our size affords us opportunities.” Chavis backs up his statement with a litany of programs, activities and clubs that have been designed to give this extraordinarily large school a more intimate feel. Prime examples are UCF’s living-learning communities. These residential units allow like-minded students to live with, socialize with, and motivate each other, and include such groups as EXCEL, which supports freshmen and sophomores in mathematics and science courses, STEP (Supporting Teacher


Education Preprofessionals), and Nursing @ Nike. Couple that with the more than 400 official student clubs—ranging from the Rock Climbing Club to the Moroccan American League—and the point Chavis makes becomes clear. Because of UCF’s size, there are opportunities for everyone to fit in. “I think the size is a good thing,” sophomore Cynthia Florentino says. “UCF has really helped me grow as a person.” “We need to get the message out that big isn’t bad. We need to tell the story of what big means, why it’s a benefit,” says Maribeth Ehasz, vice president of student development and enrollment services.

You Say Big. Hitt Says Access.

When pressed to answer the question of whether

CAMPUS THEN AND NOW It took 30 years for UCF to reach 30,000 students, and 13 years to nearly double that number.


size matters, or more specifically, whether growing so large was the goal in the first place, the subject turns to a single word, “access.” “That is President Hitt’s real goal,” Chavis says. “From the very beginning, he has always been committed to giving as many people as possible access to a college education.” Maribeth Ehasz agrees that access is the aim, but viewed through the lens of someone whose mission is to nurture those 58,587 students, she sees a bigger picture. “Our goal,” she says, “is access and success.” She insists that these two objectives are inseparable. “We are concerned with giving [students] a quality education and a positive experience.” President Hitt agrees. In his 2011 “State of the University” address, he stated that “Growth at UCF is about improving the quality of life for our students, their families and our city-state.”

Giving more students access to a college degree is admirable, but complicated. According to a May 2011 New York Times article, “Employment rates for new college graduates have fallen sharply in the last two years … only half of the jobs landed by these new graduates even require a college degree, reviving debates about whether higher education is ‘worth it’ after all.”


P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 21






UF 1200 FSU

Increasing the quality of incoming freshmen is getting tougher and tougher, so UCF is reaching out to high schools to provide programs to help them prepare their students for college.

USF 1100 FIU State Univ. System Avg. 1000


















F I G 2 . 1 5 -Y E A R S AT C O M PA R I S O N B E T W E E N S TAT E U N I V E R S I T I E S

My goal isn’t necessarily about growth or even access. I want UCF to be every applicant’s first choice. G O R D O N C H AV I S A S S O C I AT E V I C E P R E S I D E N T U N D E R G R A D U AT E A D M I S S I O N S

The article explains that salaries for college graduates have gone down: “The median starting salary for students graduating from four-year colleges in 2009 and 2010 was $27,000, down from $30,000 for those who entered the work force from 2006 to 2008.” The picture gets even darker when you consider that 41 percent of UCF’s 2010 graduates completed their degrees owing an average of $18,966 in student debt.

Yet, Floridians still covet a college education. According to the State University

System, enrollment in Florida’s public universities rose 2.6 percent during the 2011–2012 academic year. And for good reason. State data shows that high school graduates earn an average of $28,000 a year, while those with a bachelor’s degree earn an average of $68,400 annually. Plus, with competition for jobs being fierce in this down economy, many employers won’t even interview an applicant who doesn’t have a college degree.

So, there may be many reasons that students desire a college education, but perhaps the real question is whether Florida’s businesses and employers desire more college graduates. The Lumina Foundation, an independent organization working to increase college graduation rates, has been studying that very issue.


FAC T : I n


By 2018, 59 percent of Florida jobs will require a college credential.

2010, only 36.5 percent of adults in Florida had college degrees. By 2025, only 42.6 percent of adults in Florida will have college degrees.

The Lumina Foundation’s figures imply that providing greater access to a college education is a necessary goal if we, as a state, are going to grow economically.

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Growth is Great, but What About Admissions Standards?

How Big is too Big?

The assessment of UCF’s growth would be incomplete without a closer

All this discussion of growth naturally leads to the question

inspection of the quality of students admitted. Who are these 18-year-olds who are flocking to UCF in record numbers?

of “How big is too big?” President Hitt has stated, “There is no magic number at which enrollment must stop, but the Orlando campus does have limits on how many students it can serve.” So, is While it is well known that enrollment has increased dramatically, what is lesser known is that test scores of incoming freshman have also risen steadily. infrastructure the only thing that could slow the university’s growth? Or, could that be overcome through the expansion of UCF’s FAC T : O  ver the last 10 years, enrollment at UCF has risen by 63 regional campuses or by increasing the number of online courses? percent and the average SAT scores of the incoming class As Chavis, Hielema and even the students we spoke with have have risen 98 points. all implied, maybe we just need to change the subject. Maybe the FAC T : U  CF’s fall 2011 freshman class included 74 National Merit question of whether size matters is simply not relevant. Ehasz Scholars, which ranks UCF 34th in the nation. insists that UCF’s commitment to growth is simply in the university’s DNA. “I wouldn’t stop the growth,” she says. “It’s part “If the quality were to dip, then size might become a greater concern,” says Gordon Chavis. of who we are ... always striving for access and success.” F

C H A N G I N G FAC E O F U C F UCF’s increase in size and quality has been accompanied by an increasingly diverse freshman class. Minority enrollment is currently at a record 37 percent.

P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 23


Things are bigger in ... Orlando? We know UCF is big, but were you aware of these fun “big� facts?

Big Picture

H E AV Y R E A D I N G : Special Collections and University Archives Senior Archivists Burak Ogreten and Sandra Varry display a Spanish antiphonary, for a choir of the Divine Office of the Catholic Church, dating ca. 1520-1560. The antiphonary includes Latin chant notation on red staves, decorated capitals in red and blue ink, and strapwork capitals in black ink with yellow wash. Its wood binding is covered in cowhide with brass corners and inset studs. This beautiful manuscript was acquired in 2010 as a gift from Sylvia Semel of Maitland, Fla.

M A K E T H E L O G O B I G G E R : There are 42 large mounted or inlaid UCF logos across the Orlando campus, but at 18 feet in diameter, the UCF seal in the Student Union is the biggest. It is also the object of a cherished superstition: It is said that any student who walks across it will not graduate.

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PEGASUS B U G G I N ’ O U T : Collection Manager Shawn Kelly holds a Goliath beetle (Goliathus goliatus) from equatorial Africa. Considered the world’s heaviest insect, it is part of UCF’s Stuart M. Fullerton Collection of Arthropods, which contains specimens from around the globe. The collection is best known, however, as the largest insect collection in the world focusing specifically on Central Florida. Says Curator Dr. Hojun Song, “Central Florida is a biogeographically interesting area and a global hot spot for biodiversity, all of which make our insect collection big.” See more big bugs at

J E R S E Y G U Y : Equipment manager John Whitford is in his ninth season with UCF Athletics. He is responsible for six Knights teams, including volleyball, basketball and soccer. The equipment room has more than 50,000 items inventoried. Whitford holds the jersey of former basketball center Jakub Kusmieruk.

O T H E R B I G FAC T S : UCF’s College of Education has produced 21,298 teachers who, in turn, have taught approximately 3,371,815 students (using average class size of 15.6, and average career of 13.5 years). Last football season, visitors to Bright House Networks Stadium consumed 4,530 nachos, 7,953 hot dogs, 11,233 pretzels and a whopping 6,136 gallons of soda.

G R A P E A P E : Rosen College of Hospitality Management Chef Instructor Jay Judy presents a magnum of Beaujolais nouveau from the Anheuser-Busch Beer and Wine Lab.

Big Enough

Harris Rosen spent the first half of his career making millions and the second half giving away millions. From Hell’s Kitchen in New York to a Quality Inn in Orlando, here is his story.

Harris Rosen was fired.

His bosses at Walt Disney World told him that they didn’t believe he would ever become “a company man.” So, they fired him. Harris didn’t disagree. Despite his successes developing the Contemporary, Polynesian and Fort Wilderness resorts, he realized that he couldn’t be what Disney wanted him to be.

“I finally came to the conclusion that I most likely didn’t have the organization man’s personality,” says Rosen. “I’ve known since an early age that I’ve been inflicted with what I call that awful defective entrepreneurial gene. Deep down inside I knew that one day I was destined to be in business for myself.” For Rosen, playing it safe is a risky proposition.

So after leaving Disney, he withdrew his last $20,000 from savings and put a down payment on a 256room Quality Inn on Orlando’s International Drive. And that’s where it all began. Today, located off a nondescript corridor in that same Quality Inn, he continues to defy expectations. Rosen’s office feels more like a cozy living room than the opulent offices presumed for the innovator who built the largest independently owned hotel group 26 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

in Florida. Instead of fine art and interior decorator touches, the room bursts with artifacts from real life. A large photo of his Russian grandfather Harry Rosenovsky. Rosen’s wallet-sized U.S. Army ID card. An autographed sketch of baseball great Jackie Robinson—drawn by Rosen when he was 10 years old. His judo uniform, recently recovered from his mother’s condo. Amidst it all, his two dogs, Apple and Bambi, wander freely. “I’ve been in this room for 37 years,” Rosen says. “This is not exactly what people who aspire to be successful dream of having … beautiful offices and private planes and condos all over the place. But for me, it’s very comfortable.” Marilyn Monroe and Mom’s Advice

Harris Rosen’s first job in hospitality was helping his dad finish and distribute hand-lettered place cards for banquets at the Waldorf Astoria in New York. He was paid a penny a card—a fortune by a 10-yearold’s standards. Even more valuable was the chance encounter that set him on the path he would follow the rest of his life. “One day, we walk into the elevator and the most magnificent lady, a blonde lady with a beautiful

BIG DOG Rosen’s office is as unassuming as he is. His dogs, Bambi and Apple (not pictured), are frequent officemates. P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 27


DREAM BIG In 1993, Harris Rosen “adopted” a run-down, druginfested section of Orlando called Tangelo Park. Rosen offers free preschool for all children prior to kindergarten and a free college education for high school graduates. Today, the high school graduation rate for Tangelo Park is 100 percent. And no, that is not a typo. T O P : Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat point guard, visits Tangelo Park Elementary School during the NBA AllStar Weekend in Orlando to host an FCAT rally and donate $100,000 to the school. R I G H T : A Tangelo Park resident expresses her joy and appreciation for Rosen’s help in supporting her children and her community.

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PEGASUS figure, was there with a very tall, distinguished gentleman,” he recalls. “I whispered to my dad, ‘Who is that?’ … He turned and said, ‘Ambassador Kennedy, Marilyn, this is my son, Harris.’ It was Marilyn Monroe. That sealed it for me. I thought if I could meet all of these incredible people in an elevator, this really was a business that I might enjoy.” While his father revealed a whole new world to Rosen, his mother showed him the path there. Manhattan’s Lower East Side in the ’40s and ’50s was a crowded ghetto teeming with immigrants and afflicted with disease. Rosen recalls stepping over people in the street on his way to school and passing homeless crowds huddled beneath the elevated train line overpass. Still, he looks back on the neighborhood with fondness, admitting that he didn’t see anything wrong with it until the day a sightseeing bus came through and he heard a passenger remark, “So this is how they live.” “My brother and I didn’t know what she meant,” he says. “Mom had to explain to us that not everyone lives this way. And if we didn’t want to live here for the rest of our lives, we had to work hard in school and get a good education.” After a thoughtful pause he says simply, “Good advice.” Though he took that advice, earning a bachelor’s degree in hotel administration from Cornell University, Rosen admits that he felt like an outsider looking in. “Me at an Ivy League school—I was an aberration!” he says. Building a College and a Legacy

Like his encounter with Marilyn Monroe

and his days at Cornell, Rosen has a way of casting even the largest efforts in a decidedly low-key light. “I was having lunch with UCF Professor Abe Pizam, and I told him, ‘One day Abe, I will build you a new school.’ At the time, the hospitality program was part of the business school. There were about 75 students,” says Rosen. Five years later, Rosen made good on his promise, pledging $10 million in cash and 20 acres of property at his new resort, Rosen Shingle Creek. His contribution, however, came with certain conditions. “I told President Hitt that I would really prefer the new college be out here near the theme

parks, convention center and International Drive ... closer to where all of the action is.” Rosen and his team were invited to help design the building. So he invited the deans from the top hospitality colleges in the nation— Cornell, Michigan State, UMass, UNLV— to be his weekend guests. Armed with their input, Rosen’s team of architects developed “a tremendous plan based on the best of the best of the best.” And in 2004, the Rosen College of Hospitality Management opened on time and on budget. “I didn’t want to make a fuss out of the UCF donation,” Rosen says. “I was ready to just send a check in the mail. But President Hitt implored me not to do it that way. He said, ‘Let us make an announcement. Let us use your name. If people hear that you’re doing something, it might encourage others to do something.’ When he put it that way, I had to say okay.”

Mom had to explain to us that not everyone lives this way. And if we didn’t want to live here for the rest of our lives, we had to work hard in school and get a good education. Today, with founding Dean Abe Pizam at the helm and 3,500 students enrolled, the UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management is the largest hospitality program in the nation. An Impact Felt Across Generations

Epiphany might be too strong of a word ...

it was more of a voice. A feeling that ‘now is the time.’ You’ve achieved more success than you ever imagined. It’s time now to recognize that you’ve been blessed ... to be thankful and to share your good fortune with others.” Having had his own life so radically transformed by education, Rosen knew that this was an area he wanted to focus on, and Tangelo Park was the place. Tangelo Park is built on land once used for orange groves. Originally built as housing for workers at the nearby Martin Marietta, it has become an isolated residential area. There are few services nearby for residents, and few public

transit options. African Americans comprise 90 percent of the community, with many living below the poverty line. “I fell in love with the neighborhood,” says Rosen. “I knew I wanted to do some type of scholarship program for them.” The Tangelo Park Program, started in 1993, gives every neighborhood child age 2 to 4 access to free preschool. Parents have access to parenting classes, vocational courses and technical training. For a program that took just one hour and four people to develop, the impact has been wide and deep. Tangelo Park Elementary is now a grade-A school. Every high school senior graduates. But there’s more. Much more. Every high school graduate who is accepted to a Florida public university, community or state college, or vocational school receives a full Harris Rosen Foundation scholarship, which covers tuition, living and educational expenses through graduation. Nearly 200 students have earned Rosen scholarships, and of those, 75 percent have graduated from college—the highest rate among an ethnic group in the nation. “I was part of the first generation of pre-K children in the Tangelo Park Program. Now I’m about to be the first generation of my family to go to college,” says Antionette Butler, a senior at Dr. Phillips High School. Butler plans to use her Rosen scholarship to attend UCF and study neurology. Donna Wilcox used her Rosen scholarship to earn a bachelor’s degree in interpersonal/ organizational communication at UCF, and then went on to complete her M.A. in mass communications at the University of Georgia. “When people have the resources to go and succeed, there’s a ripple effect,” she says. “It becomes generational. No one in my family ever went to college before, but now, my baby sister can’t even picture a life without college. My mother even went back and got her degree. I showed her that she could do it.” After spending $9 million on his adopted neighborhood of 2,500 residents, Rosen was asked if the program has a stopping point. “I will be involved in the program until Tangelo Park is a gated community and the average home is selling for $1 million. Then I’m gone.” F

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Dr. Sudipta Seal holds a microchip fitted with nanoparticles. 30 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2



N A Will the Science of Small Ever Have Its Big Moment?

Talking to a UCF nanoscientist about nanoscience is like chasing one

person down 10 paths at the same time. Conversation veers wildly. One minute you’re talking about sunscreen, the next minute lasers. Ask a question about cell phones; get an answer about smoke alarms. And just when you think you’re heading toward rocket science, you turn a corner and run right into cancer treatment. Welcome to the far-reaching, mind-boggling world of nanoscience. What’s in a Nano?

For nonscientists to understand this world, they must know that a

nano is not a thing, but a unit of measurement. A nanometer (nm) is defined as one-billionth of a meter. To put this in perspective, consider that the pinhead measures about 1 million nm across, a human hair about 80,000 nm in diameter, and a DNA molecule between 1–2 nm. Strange things happen when materials reach nano size. Silver is completely nontoxic in its common form, yet nanosilver particles are capable of killing viruses on contact. Aluminum, generally considered a stable and soft metal, is combustible as a nanoparticle, and two years ago, researchers unveiled nano-engineered aluminum alloys that are stronger than steel.

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Dr. Sudipta Seal, director of the NanoScience Technology Center and the Advanced Materials Processing and Analysis Center (AMPAC) at UCF, asks his classes, “When is gold not gold? When it is nanogold, which can be many different colors.” Nanomaterials do exist in nature— volcanic ash, smoke and sea spray all contain nanoparticles. And as early as the 1600s, alchemists were using chemical reactions to create nanogold, which can still be seen in stained glass windows. But it wasn’t until the invention of the scanning tunneling microscope in 1981 that scientists could actually see what was happening and begin manipulating materials at the nano scale. The discovery of fullerenes in 1986, specially shaped carbon nanoparticles that exhibit unusual strength and conductivity, kicked off an explosion in nano research as scientists raced to uncover the true potential of these exciting materials. Today, nanoscientists capitalize on the unique properties of nanomaterials to create new materials, systems and devices. The new Boeing 787 Dreamliners, for instance, are built with nanofiber composites that are stronger, lighter and more fuel-efficient than aluminum and steel. Nanotechnology Fantasy and Fact

In his 1986 book, Engines of

Creation, nanotech pioneer Eric Drexler described a scenario in which nanorobots could spiral out of control, obliterating bio-organisms as they created replicas of themselves.

THINKING BIG D r. Sudipta Seal at the Advanced Materials Processing and Analysis Center. The technology created here can be applied to everything from stronger concrete to more effective burn treatments.

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The classic sci-fi series “Star Trek” featured a device known as the “replicator,” which could generate anything from a glass of wine to an electric guitar by building it directly from the molecular level—the same process used to create nanoparticles today. Judging by the fantastic representations of nanoscience that have emerged in our culture over the years, one might presume that nanotechnology is well on its way to


revolutionizing every area of our lives. The truth, at least for the time being, is far less dramatic. In fact, ordinary citizens already see, wear and use nanotechnologies on a regular basis. The high-speed processors in modern computers and mobile phones. The LED bulbs in a traffic light. The ability to buy clothing that doesn’t wrinkle, paints that don’t fade, and sunscreen that doesn’t turn white after a few hours. All have been made possible by nanoscience. The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies maintains an inventory of consumer products that manufacturers identify as being “nanotechnology-enabled,” meaning they either contain nanomaterials or utilize nanotechnology. To date, more than 1,300 of these products have entered the commercial marketplace.

environmental cleanup and green technology. His own research focuses on the development of nanofuels and industrial materials that produce less environmental waste. “New technologies are always trying to mimic what nature has been doing all along,” he says. “So, can we create solar panels that convert energy as efficiently as those tiny leaves create energy for a

It took 40 years for science to tap into the full potential of laser technology. That’s how it will be with nano. People will get excited about nano again, but it won’t be because of one big thing.

In the Health and Fitness category, products range from acne treatments to lightweight tennis rackets. These are certainly handy innovations. But where are the dazzling breakthroughs that live up to the hype and intrigue that have surrounded nanoscience since the early 1980s?

According to Dr. Thomas O’Neal, associate vice president of the Office of Research & Commercialization at UCF, and founder and executive director of the UCF Business Incubation Program, they’re still in the works. NSTC and Nano’s New Frontiers

Inside the 21,000-square-foot UCF NanoScience

Technology Center (NSTC), faculty members, students and research staff members are exploring nanotechnology’s vast possibilities. Nanomaterials are being used as drug delivery systems. As the building blocks of highly precise lasers. As the key to more efficient solar energy, rocket propulsion and environmental waste cleanup. The scope is so wide that you can’t help but wonder how the NSTC narrows down its field of research applicants to choose the next projects. “We always try to see what is the next big thing needed to fuel the economy,” explained Seal. Then almost immediately, he expanded the possibilities. “We choose things to contribute to the next frontiers of science.” According to Seal, those frontiers lie in the areas of medicine, energy, water purification,

massive tree? Can we engineer cancer therapies that work as efficiently as our own cells that differentiate uncontrollably and cause cancer in the first place? That’s what our research is asking.” Even when researchers find the answer in the labs, the road to market can take more than a decade. To date, NSTC researchers have launched six spinoff companies to advance their research from the lab setting to marketable consumer products and patient therapies. The process takes both time and money. While NSTC projects have received grants from several local and federal partners, including the National Institutes of Health, NASA and the Army Research Laboratory, nanotechnology funding overall is on the decline in the U.S. O’Neal remains optimistic about the future potential of the field. “It took 40 years for science to tap into the full potential of laser technology,” he says. “That’s how it will be with nano. The discoveries are just starting to become more prolific. People will get excited about nano again, and the funding will follow, but it won’t be because of one big thing. A bunch of small successes can add up to a pretty big change.” For the science of small, perhaps there will be no revolution. Just an evolution of our world happening all around us, in baby steps. F

FROM RESEARCH TO THE REAL WORLD Some of the key discoveries made in UCF NanoScience Technology Center labs have the potential to lead to these remarkable realworld applications: •A  n over-the-counter cancer test, similar to a home pregnancy test •D  VDs with triple the storage capacity •L  ithium batteries with dramatically higher energy capacity •R  obotic fingers and hands sensitive enough to perform surgery •S  uper-capacitors that store much larger amounts of solar and wind power •F  aster, more accurate testing of pharmaceutical cancer therapies •P  reventive treatments for Alzheimer’s disease •T  reatments that use a patient’s own stem cells to fight Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, cancer and heart disease •A  concrete-substitute that can be produced with zero carbon emissions (concrete production currently accounts for five percent of worldwide carbon emissions) For more information on NSTC research, visit

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Big Shot I T W A S S P U R O F T H E M O M E N T, so I didn’t have much time to get nervous. But when Dr. B pulled that needle out, I did whisper to myself, ‘Don’t mess up.’ It’s pretty cool when your instructor is selfless and lets you practice on him. I gave him a SpongeBob BAND-AID. And as soon as I could, I called my dad and said, ‘Guess what I just did?’ Matthew Wolfson, M.D. Candidate

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A doctor in training is schooled in the fine art of inserting a needle into an arm. His first patient? His instructor.


I T WA S T H E C O O L E S T T H I N G I N T H E W O R L D ! Matthew had butterflies, but he’s an excellent student and picks things up quickly. His first needle experience differs greatly from my own. I was shown the supplies and told, ‘Good luck.’ I had no active instruction. Now we can’t handhold too much, but today’s students do have a hands-on training advantage. Dr. Rafik Bouaziz, Assistant Professor (Affiliated/Volunteer Faculty) Lake Baldwin Medical

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Making the Most of a Micro Budget


believe our students learn in three years what it took me 20 to learn,” says Stephen Schlow, interim chair of the UCF Film Department, “which is that the amount of money you have is in fact a tool, not a barrier. It’s just another thing you work with to make your film.” Students in the Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) track in entrepreneurial digital media are encouraged to consider film costs a restraint that must be lived with, not a problem to be solved. At UCF, students must finance (via fundraising or personally) their own feature-length digital film on a budget of $50,000 or less. “The goal in this process is for someone to come out on the other side with an understanding of the relationship between story, film and budget,” Schlow says. “We’re all about allowing them to make the films they want to make without being held accountable to investors or distributors.”

Shooting a feature film with a small budget also provides students with lessons in business, one of the goals of the program. With a limited budget and limited resources, the artist is forced to be innovative and flexible, adapting when things don’t go as planned. “I once got caught in a sandstorm in Egypt and lost two days of shooting,” he recalls. “When something unplanned happens, and inevitably it does,” he says, “students have to find another way to get the shot or tell that part of the story.” 36 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

FA L L I N G A PA R T Director/Writer: Christopher Valori, ’10 Have you ever loved someone so much that when you lost them you fell apart? When Audrey breaks up with Alex, he begins falling apart … literally. Can he see Audrey one last time before it’s too late?

O R A N G E AV E . Director/Writer/Editor: Gabrielle Robinson-Tillenburg A girl in the trap of a nightlife routine.

CASTLE OTTTIS Director/Producer/Editor: Nils Taranger II, ’10 A gay man seeks God and finds refuge. Leave hate and prejudice at the door of Castle Otttis.

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SÉANCE Director/Writer/Editor: Zachary Beckler, ’11 Two sisters host a séance party at their new house. It awakens something.

“I once got caught in a sandstorm in Egypt and lost two days of shooting,” Schlow recalls.“When something unplanned happens, and inevitably it does, students have to find another way to get the shot or tell that part of the story.”

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Andrew Gay, an M.F.A. graduate and current instructor in the program, also took away important lessons in how budget constraints can translate into artistic opportunities. While shooting scenes for his thesis film, “A Beautiful Belly,” he found creative ways to make the most of every dollar, including shooting some critical scenes for free at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium with live dolphins. Gay says, “The dolphin footage we shot was more beautiful than I ever could have imagined, and it adds like a million bucks of production value to our movie and cost us basically nothing.”

The other important parameter of the program is that students must make their films in an entirely digital format. As with the limited budget, the goal is not to treat the medium as an obstacle, but to encourage students to make movies that take advantage of it. “There’s a quality to the digital image that’s not being explored,” Schlow says. “The goal is often to make digital look like film. From my point of view, that’s retro. Daguerreotypes, the early photographs, were meant to look like paintings. Early films tried to feel like theater. It took years for people to change the language of

MARCH 31 Director/Writer: Christina Santa Cruz, ’09 An abstract display of memories and inner struggles creates a surrealist reconstruction of a young girl’s fear as she attempts to cope with a recent loss.

film, to embrace it for what it is, rather than what it isn’t. That’s not happening yet with digital.” Gay’s thesis film, which premiered at the Florida Film Festival and won the Crystal Apple Award at the Melbourne International Film Festival, was produced in an entirely digital format. Gay feels that shooting with a small camera and small crew created a more intimate feeling on the set and with the actors, and that intimacy can be felt on the screen, giving more credibility to his story.

While the M.F.A. students

receive guidance from faculty

and advisors at all phases of the production, they are treated as filmmakers and not just students. At UCF, students hold the reins of their projects. Other universities place students in a secondary role to faculty, who initiate or direct the films. The UCF program also offers student filmmakers something else that no other film program does: 100 percent of the rights to their films. “At most schools, the rights, at least partially, are owned by the university,” Schlow says.

and one of the top two reasons students say they select the UCF program. “The first reason is the program’s emphasis on the business side of filmmaking,” Schlow says. “The second is the fact that students own their own films.”

Interested in learning more about micro-budgeted films? Visit

If a student’s film is successful, he or she retains control over the movie and can decide when and where it will be shown. And if a student’s film becomes profitable, he or she will reap the rewards. F

For the 20 students who apply and the four or five who are admitted, this is an important distinction— P E G A S U S . U C F. E D U / 39


AlumKnights ’70s

Bob Gibson, ’75, celebrated his 30th anniversary with his employer, Curtiss-Wright, in 2011. While his work with the firm has focused on business development, Bob’s lifelong passion is aviation. During his time at UCF, he was an active participant in the Pegasus Pilots and won awards competing against other colleges in the National Intercollegiate Flying Association. After 41 years of flying more than 90 makes and models, Bob celebrated his anniversary by flying a rare 1950s vintage MiG-15 jet. Bob Morrison, ’75, managing partner of Morrison Valuation & Forensic Services, appointed to the board of directors of the Institute of International Business Valuators. John Pryor, ’79, celebrated his 26th wedding anniversary.


Jorge Figueredo, ’80, selected as the Atkins tolls business sector manager. John Mattone, ’80, named one of the 25 fastest-rising stars in the field of leadership development by Kristen Lynch, ’83, is a new shareholder at Fowler White Burnett. Donna Sarro, ’83, was the featured speaker at the Student Alumni Association’s Brown Bag Career Series at Fontbonne University in St. Louis.

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Lynda “Lee” Crews, ’84, named co-head of the life sciences and biotechnology division of Duane Morris Intellectual Property Practice Group. Melodye Hendrix, ’84, named senior director of development for the Campbell University School of Law in Raleigh, N.C. Shannon Carlyle, ’87, received the Brevard County (Fla.) Legal Aid’s Appellate Law Award from U.S. District Court Judge John Antoon II. Bill Hendrickson, ’88, joined engineering and material-testing company Element as executive vice president of global sales and marketing. Ed Wood, ’88, president of Concord Management, employs numerous fellow Knights. UCF alumni in key leadership positions include Wayne Kalish, ’83, chief financial officer; Pete Heckman, ’77, vice president/controller; and Andrew Frye, ’93, vice president of finance. Other alumni employees include: Nick Strzlec, ’98; Kevin Wenrich, ’93; Denisse Soler, ’00; Raquel Spinelli, ’99; Chasity Sears, ’03; Julie MacLane, ’87; Ashley Noonan, ’10; Jason Link, ’06; Brian Hugh, ’92; Brian Paul, ’97; Jennifer Wood, ’97; Rashida PierreGraham, ’06; Ashley Jones, ’04; Pat Hart, ’99; Kathy Tripp, ’10; Lisa Robinson, ’80; Mark Burdue, ’96; Ken Barre, ’96; Derek Griffin, ’00; Cynthia Briceno, ’04; and Austria Gentry, ’06. Debra Allen, ’89, and Timothy Tompkins celebrated a beachside wedding in New Smyrna Beach, Fla. The couple honeymooned in the western Caribbean. Debra is the senior

B I G S W A G G E R “If I was scared, I wouldn’t be doing this,” says Shea Holbrook, ’12, who is the first woman to win a Long Beach Touring Car Race at the Long Beach Grand Prix. “A lot of race car drivers, don’t choose school,” says Holbrook. “But school has always been a priority for me.” Holbrook transferred from Valencia College in 2010, and earned a bachelor’s degree in interpersonal/ organizational communication at UCF this spring. account executive at Safemark Systems in Orlando, and Timothy is the FDIC at Baggett & Summers in Daytona Beach. The couple lives in Orlando. Dave Becker, ’89, selected as the 2011–12 Teacher of the Year at Windermere Preparatory School in Windermere, Fla. Dave teaches international baccalaureate mathematics higher level and standard level and is the mathematics department chair. His wife, Kim (Mentink), ’90, and sister, Patricia (Becker) Matthews, ’79, are also members of the faculty at Windermere Prep. Elizabeth “Lisa” MorenoHaramboure, ’89, of Moreno, Peelen, Pinto & Clark, qualified to receive the National Association of Health Underwriters’ (NAHU) prestigious Soaring Eagle Award. The award is the highest honor given by the Leading Producers Round Table of NAHU to recognize members who have achieved great success in demonstrating exceptional professional knowledge and outstanding client service.


Darla Olive, ’91, and Bill Talley were married in Winter Park, Fla., with the wedding reception held at the UCF FAIRWINDS

Alumni Center. UCF alumni in the wedding party included Kerri (Burmood) Kramer, ’91; Buffy Olive, ’93; and Audrey (Newlin) Davidson, ’02. Darla is director of programs, outreach and engagement for the UCF Alumni Association. Kevin Rupinta, ’91, promoted to general manager of Advanced Disposal’s Augusta hauling location. Jim Atchison, ’92, president and chief executive officer of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, was inducted into the Central Florida Hospitality Hall of Fame at UCF’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management. Nancy DiSalvo, ’92, promoted to partner at BKHM CPAs in Winter Park, Fla.

Zaki Moussaoui, ’92, appointed vice president at Exar Corporation.

John Schmid, ’92, president of Schmid Construction, awarded nearly $10 million in contracts to build a 44,000-squarefoot athletic facility at Montverde Academy in south Lake County, Fla., a RaceTrac convenience store in Poinciana, Fla., and a Toys“R”Us in Royal Palm Beach, Fla.



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SECTION (COVER STORY) NY GIANTS Kim Isemann, ’92, and Josie Ramirez, ’11, tower over New York at LEGOLAND Florida. New York City took eight builders 1,731 hours and includes a 21-foot Empire State Building. Isemann (director of sales and marketing) and Ramirez (corporate sales manager) join alumni Omaira Soto, ’06, (education and youth sales representative) and Nicole Arenas, ’08, (media promotions representative) who work at the theme park, which opened last year.

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PEGASUS Samuel Haidle, ’93, named a DBusiness Top Lawyer 2012. He also made the list of Michigan’s Super Lawyers 2011. Tarsha Jacobs, ’93, promoted to senior audit manager and recently elected Region IV Representative to the board of governors of the Florida Institute of CPAs.

they have the power to bring sins and the dead back to life—and the dead don’t like sinners. As the students quickly find out, past actions can lead to present nightmares. The film received two best picture awards from the Fear Fête Horror Film Festival and the Los Angeles Tabloid Witch Awards. Neal Renuart, ’98, promoted to partner at BKHM CPAs in Winter Park, Fla.

Jack Storey, ’93, launched JBS Media. Scott Cookson, ’94, joined ShuffieldLowman as a firm partner.

Trace Trylko, ’94, named first executive director of the Diocesan Council of Orlando Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a Catholic lay organization leading people to grow spiritually by offering person-toperson service to the needy and suffering. Heather (Oakes) Hawks, ’95, and husband Tim welcomed son Matthew Oakes on Sept. 9. The family resides in the Atlanta area. Todd Mazza, ’95, promoted to vice president and chief technology officer for Levi Strauss & Co. Charles Mann, ’96, named managing partner at Pavese Law Firm. He was also named one of Gulfshore Business’s “40 Under 40.” M. Teresa Trascritti, ’96, graduated with an Ed.D. in leadership from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary’s School of Church Ministries in December. Lori (Kifer) Johnson, ’98, and husband Jason welcomed daughter Molly Kate on Aug. 5. The family resides in Winter Park, Fla. Mark McHugh, ’98, president and chief executive officer of Gatorland, was inducted into the Central Florida Hospitality Hall of Fame at UCF’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management. Sharon Reed, ’98, produced local film, The Sacred. The story follows five young students who unwittingly stumble upon a ghostly ancient Indian ritualistic site deep in the Florida swamps. These grounds are cursed—

Tyra Harper Turner, ’98, a UCF volleyball hall of famer, is the proud mom of Myles Hogan, who is already preparing to be a Knight. Tiffaney Miller Alexander, ’99, selected as one of three women from Kennedy Space Center to be interviewed and featured on the Women at NASA website. This was part of a directive by President Obama proclaiming March 2012 as Women’s History Month. The Women at NASA website’s goal is to encourage girls and women to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers. Scott Baker, ’99, and Erin (McCrary), ’02, welcomed daughter Kaitlyn Faith on Aug. 12. James Carignan, ’99, promoted from associate to of counsel at Pepper Hamilton. Bill Doughty, ’99, communications director at CH2M HILL, was elected to the board of directors for the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Colorado Chapter. He will serve a three-year term as PRSA Leadership Assembly delegate. Bill and his wife, Candace, live in Denver and recently celebrated their 25th anniversary. Brian Mathews, ’99, appointed associate dean of learning and outreach for Virginia Tech University Libraries.


Barbara Alexander, ’00, accepted a position as the director of operations and account services with The Global Event Team, a full-service meeting and event management company in Orlando, Fla. Nathan McCoy, ’00, became a shareholder with the Central Florida employment and labor law firm of Wilson McCoy.

Stephen Shapiro, ’00, and Dee Dee (Bauer), ’05, welcomed daughter Lucy Mae on April 25. The family resides in Virginia Beach, Va.

Marie, on June 10, 2011. The family lives in Lexington, Ky., where Rusty works as an assistant professor and director of the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity at Eastern Kentucky University.

Chris Tango, ’00, named general manager of Devcon Security in Jupiter, Fla.

Daniel Lynch, ’03, promoted to the rank of lieutenant for the Melbourne Police Department in Melbourne, Fla.

Susan Ennis, ’01, founder and president of EnSpire Communication, selected as vice president of accreditation and certification for the Florida Public Relations Association’s executive committee. James Adamczyk, ’02, promoted to executive vice president of lending for FAIRWINDS Credit Union in Orlando. Leisa Barber, ’02, and her husband, Shaun, ’05, welcomed their little Knight, Drayton Clark.

Phil Dalhausser, ’02, Olympic beach volleyball gold medalist, once again earned a spot on the U.S. Olympic team. Nathan Holic, ’02, and his wife, Heather, ’03, announced the birth of their son, Jackson, on Jan. 5. Nathan is an instructor for UCF’s Department of Writing and Rhetoric, and Heather is the director of physician contracting for UnitedHealthcare. Danna Olivo, ’02, president of DAVNA Enterprises, signed her first contract with Dahl Associates, which manufactures modular steel hotels under the brand Smarthotel. Jaeann (Bollinger), ’03, married Blair Ashton in Boca Grande, Fla. Alumni in the wedding party included Chad Hendricks, ’01; Amanda White, ’01; Nicole Berg, ’04; Ivette (Abreu) Herald, ’04; and Vanessa (Bowman) Bershad, ’05. Jaeann is the marketing manager for VS Publishing Company, and Blair owns his own insurance company. Rusty Carpenter, ’03, and his wife, Barbie, welcomed their daughter, Kendall

Jason Schwartz, ’03, received distinguished service honors in the Durrance Award for most outstanding chapter advisor fraternity wide for the Omega Phi Chapter of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity at UCF. Manny Amores, ’04, and Angela Lambert were married in Dallas, Texas. UCF alumni in the wedding party included best man Brian Slutsky, ’04; Kevin Ortiz, ’05; and Helen Pastrana, ’07. Other alumni in attendance included Mike Commeau, ’03; Jason Kain, ’03; Lance Ranzer, ’03; and Chris Tomko, ’06. The couple lives in Dallas, where Manny is a project manager for Kiewit, and Angela is a color stylist at Avalon Salon. Amy Jantzer, ’04, hired by Echo Interaction Group as director of innovation. Lautesha Morten, ’04, senior procurement analyst for the Osceola County (Fla.) Board of County Commissioners, selected as one of the “40 Under 40” Successful Women Around Osceola. Lautesha also shares her business expertise with fourthgrade students at Thacker Avenue Elementary, where she is a Junior Achievement teacher. Christopher Smith, ’04, Navy seaman, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill. Justin Axelrod, ’05, joined Broad and Cassel’s Corporate and Securities Practice Group as an associate. Chris Brown, ’05, served as the project manager for the construction and installation of the New Year’s Eve ball in Times Square. Chris also graduated from Yale and worked in New York City before returning to Central Florida, where he now works as the production and general manager for the Orlando Repertory Theatre. Christopher Casconi, ’05, married Laura Ogburn in Louisville, Ky. UCF alumni in the wedding party included fellow fraternity brothers Dallas Britt, ’04, and Jim Reidy, ’05. Several other Knights attended the ceremony.

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ALUMKNIGHTS Rozilin Mesadieu, ’05, joined Jackson Spalding as a media planner and buyer.

Kelly (Otto) Norton, ’05, and husband David welcomed daughter Kendall Brynn on Aug. 19. Tiffany Zingaretti, ’05, and her husband, Joseph, ’09, welcomed their daughter, Adelynn Grace, on Sept. 23. Brittany (Shreve) Mumford, ’06, promoted to senior booking agent for Evolution Talent Agency. In addition, her triplets, Lily Rose, Miley and Tierney turned 1 on Oct. 23. Charles Reed, ’06, accepted a position as an application consultant with SAP America, based in Lake Mary, Fla. Asher Wildman, ’06, became the new weekend sports anchor for ABC affiliate KVIA in El Paso, Texas, after six years as the host of “GolfweekTV.” Kellie (Zavada), ’06, married Sean Michelsen, ’02, on Sept. 3 in Fort Myers, Fla. They met at UCF in 2002. UCF alumni in the wedding party included Sean Fortier, ’03; Kristin Zangenburg Fortier, ’03; William Maneker, ’04; Justin Bennett, ’10; Jacqueline LeTendre, ’10; Kacie Zavada, ’10; and Suzanne Zavada, ’11; as well as UCF student Stephanie Zavada. Patrick Abrahams, ’07, won his second Emmy Award for his production in ESPN’s “College GameDay.” Todd Bryant, ’07, field director at Northwestern Mutual, was named to the Citrus Club Board of Governors. Jessica Shipman, ’07, created a nonprofit organization called Cheti, which creates opportunities for impoverished children of Tanzania through education. In less than two years, Cheti has sponsored more than 70 students through nursery and primary schools, and has provided health and educational resources to two primary schools in Tanzania. Jennifer Andrews, ’08, promoted to copywriter at Fry Hammond Barr. Ricky Ly, ’08, elected to serve a twoyear term as a member of the WMFE Community Advisory Board. Ricky’s full-time job is with Inwood Consulting

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Engineers in Oviedo, Fla., and he also works as a part-time food writer for the food blog Matthew McGuire, ’08, Marine Corps Pfc., completed 12 weeks of basic training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot in Parris Island, S.C. Lauren Jo (LaFrantz) Black, ’09, created, which was named the official country music blog for the 54th Grammy Awards. Kristina Doyle, ’09, of Purple, Rock, Scissors, was recognized as one of the Orlando Business Journal’s “Forty Under 40.” Scott Noce, ’09, Navy seaman, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill. Laura Ramos, ’09, was recently awarded “Best Actress” by the Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival for her leading role in “Nerve.” The film is a compelling story about a young man who battles social anxiety with the help of a female psychology student (Ramos). Audrey (Turpening), ’09, and Paul Wills, ’12, were married at Queen of Peace Catholic Church in Gainesville, Fla. UCF alumni in the wedding party included Daniella Goro, ’07; John Sexton, ’09; James Shore, ’09; Katie Farrell, ’10; Laura Holliman, ’12; and Drew Rossi, ’12.


Eric Caroussos, ’10, Navy seaman, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill. Rebecca Pacuch, ’10, and Dr. Joseph Collins married at Kissimmee (Fla.) Seventh-day Adventist Church. The newlyweds honeymooned in Kauai, Hawaii, and reside in eastern Oklahoma, where Rebecca works as an English teacher and Joseph is a dentist. Lauren Whitt, ’10, UCF alumna cheerleader, participated in “Bring It On: The Musical” in Los Angeles. Kirsten Kirchofer, ’11, Navy seaman, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill.

K N I G H T T O K I N G Odeneho Kwafo Akoto III, ’01 (health services administration), known as “Bernard Owiredu” when at UCF, was appointed king or “nana” for life of the Akwamu Traditional Council in Ghana, Africa. The queen mother of the Akwamu traditional area selected him for the appointment based on his royal lineage (the queen mother is his aunt) and accomplishments, which include his degree from UCF and a successful career. As king, he oversees 45 chiefs of varying levels from 26 towns. He also works as a health services administrator at Tema General Hospital in the seaport city of Tema and is an executive M.B.A. student at the University of Ghana.

Hayley Lemkin, ’11, served as the administrative intern for the Washington National Opera, as part of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the Kennedy Center. Lauren Marshall, ’11, Navy seaman, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill.



Nancy Burnett passed away on Sept. 23, surrounded by her loving husband and children. She was born in Grove City, Pa., the daughter of Fred and Lorena Nordstrom. Following graduation from Allegheny College, she became a speech and drama teacher in Ephrata, Pa., where she met the love of her life, Al Burnett. She and her family moved to Winter Park, Fla., in 1968 after acquiring Contemporary Cars. She also was a member of 101 and UCF’s Town and Gown. She actively supported many charitable organizations in Central Florida and received an honorary doctorate degree from UCF for her unfailing commitment to the university. In recognition of her generous legacy at UCF, the university president’s home, honors college and biomedical sciences college are named in honor of the Burnetts. Nancy was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, and some of her happiest times were those spent with the family on group

vacations, holiday celebrations and special occasions. She will be greatly missed by her family and friends, and everyone at UCF. Nancy is survived by her husband, Al Burnett, and her children Becky Moore (Dave Ellrich), Amy Gravina (Pete), Mindy Steele (Sam) and Bruce Burnett. She is also survived by her brother, Fred Nordstrom; her grandchildren, Allison Moore, Matt Gravina (Andrea), Karen Moore, John Ellrich, Alex Burnett and Sarah Gravina; along with many nieces and nephews and their children. The family asks that memorials be made to the American Cancer Society or Hospice of the Comforter. W. Rex Brown, one of UCF’s founding vice presidents in 1967, passed away on Oct. 23 at the age of 88. He was responsible for creating many programs that contributed to the growth and success of the university. He retired from UCF in 1992. Osler “Henry” Johns Jr., ’71, passed away Sept. 6. Henry was a constant figure at UCF alumni events. Kelly Fitzpatrick, ’97, died Sept. 23. It seemed to those who knew her that Kelly must have created the job for herself when she became nightlife columnist for the Orlando Sentinel. As a child, Kelly kept a journal and wrote stories. At Lake Mary High School, she worked on the student newspaper and pursued her ambition as a journalism major. After graduating from UCF, Kelly joined the Orlando Sentinel 15 years ago as a copy clerk, progressed to covering entertainment online, and became the newspaper’s nightlife

columnist in 2005. Her personality— social, friendly, engaging, fun loving, eager to try new things—made her a perfect fit for her beat. She liked to have a good time and enjoyed sharing the experience with others. Brandon Lord, ’02, died suddenly on Sept. 16. He is survived by his loving parents, Glenn and Linda Lord; sister, Brandy Kamm; nieces, Brea and Brylee; and nephew, Britton, all of DeBary; grandmothers, Jean Lord of Atlanta and Robin Jackson of Jacksonville; and several aunts, uncles, cousins and dear friends. Brandon graduated from Deltona High School in 1998, was appointed to West Point in 1998 and was a graduate of UCF and St. Thomas Law in Miami. Brandon was a compassionate person who saw the good in everyone. He believed in the underdog and was a true humanitarian. He died as he lived—everyone’s friend.

Alumni Notes and Announcements Send us your wedding, birth, job and personal announcements. We welcome your high-resolution photos (minimum 3 megapixels, 300 dpi). Submissions are included as space permits. Email

Mail Pegasus Alumni Notes P.O. Box 1600406 Orlando, FL 32816-0046 Phone 407.UCF.ALUM (823.2586) 800.330.ALUM (2586) Fax


Advance Your Career Ready to take the next step in your career? Make a one-on-one appointment with the UCF Alumni Association career counselor. Assistance is also available via phone or email. Visit ucfalumni. com/careerservices to schedule an appointment and for additional career planning resources.


PEGASUS Safety on the Rails: The Union Switch & Signal Story Joanne Harris, ’88, authored Safety on the Rails: The Union Switch & Signal Story, a retrospective book that commemorates the 130th anniversary of Union Switch & Signal (now known as Ansaldo STS).

The book details the inspiring story of railroading history and the company’s humble beginnings in Pennsylvania, following it through failures and successes as it weathered the storms of economic depressions, wars and the challenges of technological advancements. In addition to her book, Joanne also released her first foreign documentary short film, “A Mass of Wine,” which tells the story of the quaint village of Oberlinxweiler, Germany, from 1750 to 1870.

15 Views of Orlando From the neon strip of Little Vietnam to a desolate Albertsons parking lot, 15 Views of Orlando, edited by Nathan Holic, ’02, takes the reader on a secret tour of the City Beautiful. Told by 15 authors in a series of loosely linked fiction, the story is an experiment in setting, theme and community.

Return to Middle C A rock musician’s wife has deserted him, taking his 5-year-old son with her. Six years pass, and Ben Davenport now lives in a mansion in Orlando, with only the stray cats he has adopted as companions. His new neighbor—a beautiful woman— is determined to rejuvenate his broken spirit and to show him he can live to love again. Return To Middle C by Gregory E. Shultz, ’04, is an inspirational and gripping drama about a man’s courageous battle to take back all he has lost, including his faith, his music and his only son.

All Work, No Pay Lauren Berger, ’06, was dubbed “The Intern Queen” after completing 15 internships throughout her four years of college. She interned for wellknown companies like NBC, MTV, BWR Public Relations, Warren Cowan and Associates, The Zimmerman Agency, and many more. Upon her college graduation, she started InternQueen. com to help her peers connect with internships and learn how to make the most of them. Her site gets more than 100,000 visitors per month and remains free for students. All Work, No Pay: Finding an Internship, Building Your Resume, Making Connections, and Gaining Job Experience features even more helpful advice from the Intern Queen.

Wear YES on Your Heart YES, you can have the love life that you desire. YES, you can live the life that you deserve. And YES, you can reach your full potential—which you may not even grasp yet—that resides within. Through short stories and beautiful quotes, J.L. Ford, ’09, offers pieces of himself and his journey in Wear YES on Your Heart, a heartwarming, insightful and inspirational book.

The Tenth Saint The Tenth Saint, begins when Sarah, a Cambridge archaeologist, makes an unusual discovery in the ancient Ethiopian mountain kingdom—a sealed tomb with inscriptions in an obscure dialect. The novel follows Weston and her colleague as they try to identify the entombed man and translate the inscriptions. Like her main character, author Daphne Nikolopoulos, ’88, is a bit of a nomad at heart. In fact, Daphne, who writes under the pen name D.J. Niko, worked as a travel writer for more than 10 years, including two years backpacking around the world and exploring remote places. From her first visit in 2002, Daphne felt a particular fascination and affinity for Ethiopia and its people, which is reflected in her first novel.

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And the Horse You Rode in On . . . One morning, a future Board of Trustees Chairman woke up with an urge to ride a horse on campus. Then things got weird. BY RICK WALSH, ’77, ’83

I’ve always had a fascination with horses—and

harmless mischief—and have enjoyed plenty of both in my life. UCF’s 1976 Homecoming provided me the opportunity to experience both. I highly recommend attending UCF’s Homecoming; however, my advice to you is not to attend it while riding a horse. Not because it’s a bad idea, but because it may take an unexpected turn. On a cloudless October morning in the City Beautiful, I was 24 years old, completely sober, and decided upon waking that I needed to immediately borrow a horse. Impulse is a funny thing, assuming it’s harmless, and it can even be downright hilarious. It also can provide great memories 35 years later. Have you ever tried to catch and saddle an unwilling horse? It’s not easy—even for a cowboy born and raised on the Plains. At some point, my horse gave in. The saddle was on, the bridle fixed, the stirrups adjusted—things were looking good. I was excited for Homecoming, and welcomed a respite from studying and exams. I mounted up, and we moseyed down Rouse Road and then up University Boulevard, stopping at red lights and getting a few honks while I tipped my cowboy hat to passersby. As we got farther from the barn, however, the horse became a little uneasy. Finally, we trotted across Alafaya and entered the campus. The campus was alive with excitement as everyone prepared for the parade, a new tradition for our 46 / S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

fledgling university. The Homecoming theme was Whiskey, Wild Women and Horses—it was a different time—and we fit right in. Rufus, a university maintenance employee, watched as we rode up to say howdy. Oddly, Rufus wasn’t surprised to see me on his horse, and his horse seemed glad to see Rufus. We joined the parade, placed between a chuck wagon float and a fraternity dressed for a roundup. As the noisy parade circled the Reflecting Pond, the horse began to get feisty, and suddenly we were splashing through the water, me waving my hat and hooting a hearty “Yee-haw!” I looked back to see the campus police headed our way, so we galloped across campus to our secret hideout, waiting for Rufus to give the all clear. I knew I had pushed my luck enough, so we headed off campus as soon as possible. As we zigzagged through neighborhoods, apartments and back roads to the safety of the barn, I reflected on the greatness of the day. As Winston Churchill said, “There’s nothing more exhilarating than to be shot at without result.” It was a perfect day and a memorable Homecoming—a willing horse, great weather, fun friends, a little mischief and a lively ride home. As I’ve grown older, I’ve realized that the only things I regret are the things I didn’t do. There are no YouTube videos, tweets or Facebook posts about that day, but the details are perfectly clear in my mind. It was a Homecoming I’ll always remember! I still get a big smile on my face remembering that horse, those friends and UCF back in the day. F



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PEGASUS : The Magazine of the University of Central Florida


P. O . B O X 1 6 0 0 9 0 O R L A N D O , F L 3 2 8 1 6 - 0 0 9 0




IF THERE is anything I have learned in 20 years,

it is that our lies


greatest danger

in dreaming too


but in dreaming too s m a l l .


we dream

BIG Our greatest limitations are

those we place on ourselves. John C. Hitt P R E S I D E N T, U C F


Profile for University of Central Florida

Pegasus Summer 2012  

The Magazine of the University of Central Florida

Pegasus Summer 2012  

The Magazine of the University of Central Florida