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College of Community Innovation and Education

Rising in U.S. News Rankings, UCF Advances Florida’s Workforce Through High-quality Online Programs

The University of Central Florida unleashes the potential of its students with high-quality degrees, faculty with strong academic and industry expertise, and multiple educational pathways that best position students for success while advancing Florida’s workforce needs. Online programs are a vital pathway for the approximately 73% of students enrolled in college who are considered nontraditional students.…

New $1.25 Million UCF Project Addresses State’s Critical Shortage of Special Education Teachers, School Psychologists

University of Central Florida researchers are starting a new $1.25 million project to address a critical shortage of special education teachers and school psychologists in the state of Florida. The project, Connecting Enhanced Networks to Reach All Learners (CENTRAL), is funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and will help educators…

UCF Podcast: Reflecting on a Lifetime of Service to Students, Space and Community

Season three of Knights Do That, UCF’s official podcast, returns with its final episode with Gregg Buckingham ’02EdD, an associate lecturer in the School of Public Administration. Buckingham spent his professional career at NASA, working at both NASA headquarters in Washington, D.C., and at the Kennedy Space Center before joining UCF. Here Buckingham shares insight into…

UCF Researchers Collect Critical High-water Mark Data Following Hurricane Ian

No matter the best-laid plans or the time spent preparing for a natural disaster, there is almost certain to be some element of response or recovery that is overlooked, usually by virtue of resource constraints. With that in mind, University of Central Florida School of Public AdministrationProfessor Christopher Emrich and his team of graduate and postdoctoral researchers set…

Master’s Students Compete for the First Time in UCF’s Three-Minute Thesis Competition

From cutting-edge engineering feats to sociological and historical exploration, UCF graduate students presented their wide-ranging research endeavors in under three minutes at the Three-Minute Thesis Competition (3MT) Monday. Graduate students from various disciplines compete for prizes with a 180-second elevator pitch that covers a wide range of research topics. Hosted by the College of Graduate…

UCF Researchers Awarded NSF Grant to Establish Local Resiliency Hubs

Central Florida is no stranger to strong storms and extreme weather, but a new collaboration between UCF and the City of Orlando aims to strengthen the area’s response capabilities by developing portable resilience hubs that offer power, internet and air conditioning for residents. Through this project, Resilience, Education and Advocacy Center for Hazard preparedness (REACH)…

The Gray Men and Women of UCF

Mike Kepner ’19MA does not intend to stand out. Yet the precision in his posture and cordiality in his voice are impossible to miss. You notice as he welcomes students into a relaxing office next to Addition Financial Arena. He offers them quiet places to study, something to drink, and space to be themselves. The students…

UCF, OCPS Receive National Award for Teacher Preparation and Leadership Partnership

With quality teachers in high demand, the partnership between UCF’s School of Teacher Education and Orange County Public Schools (OCPS) is an increasingly valuable and innovative resource for enhancing teacher recruitment, development and preparation. According to the Florida Department of Education, there were nearly 4,500 teacher vacancies for the 2021-22 school year. Such information is collected from each…

UCF, OCPS Receive National Award for Teacher Preparation and Leadership Partnership

With quality teachers in high demand, the partnership between UCF’s School of Teacher Education and Orange County Public Schools (OCPS is an increasingly valuable and innovative resource for enhancing teacher recruitment, development and preparation. According to the Florida Department of Education, there were nearly 4,500 teacher vacancies for the 2021-22 school year. Such information is collected from each…

UCF Recognizes 6 Top Scholars as 2022 Luminary Award Winners

Six faculty members were lauded for being leaders and making impacts in their fields during UCF’s annual Luminary Awards on Tuesday at Leu Gardens in Orlando. The Luminary Awards are designed to recognize some of UCF’s brightest stars who shine a positive light on UCF and on their respective fields, as well as illuminate a…

UCF Podcast: Championing Against Violence

Season three of Knights Do That, UCF’s official podcast, returns with its sixth guest, Bethany Backes, an assistant professor in the Violence Against Women faculty cluster and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Criminal Justice and School of Social Work. Backes worked for more than 10 years as a social science analyst for the U.S. Department of Justice…

Developing and Sustaining Healthy Relationships Through Education

For 18 years, UCF has been helping families stay together by teaching couples research-supported techniques focused on effective communication and listening. More than 7,000 couples have benefited from the Marriage and Family Research Institute (MFRI), led by Sejal Barden and Dalena Dillman Taylor, professor and associate professor of counselor education, respectively. According to Barden, 99% of…

Noyce Fellow Represents UCF on National Science Foundation Panel

Last fall, Shane Wiggan was just beginning his journey as a National Science Foundation Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Master Teaching Fellow. He recently kicked off his second year of the program by participating on a National Science Foundation panel during which he shared his experience as a budding teacher-leader. Wiggan, an eighth-grade teacher at Freedom Middle…

UCF Podcast: Destigmatizing Mental Health, Improving Education for Professionals

Season three of Knights Do That, UCF’s official podcast, returns with its fifth guest, double Knight Gulnora Hundley ’04MA ’08PhD, an associate lecturer in UCF’s Department of Counselor Education and School Psychology. As an Uzbekistan native who speaks Russian and is a mental health counselor with nearly 40 years of experience, Hundley has stepped up to provide…

UCF Alumna Named First Hispanic Superintendent of Orange County Public Schools

with Orange County Public Schools Superintendent Barbara Jenkins ’83 ’86MEd ’96EdD set to retire at the end of the year, Maria Vazquez ’95MEd ’10EdD will soon take the helm as her replacement. Vazquez became the district’s deputy superintendent in 2018, but her career in education spans more than 30 years. She started as a teacher in Hillsborough County before…

Introducing New Faculty

We are pleased to introduce new faculty members to the College of Community Innovation and Education. They bring a wealth of experience and knowledge that will be invaluable to our students and community. Learn more about their teaching backgrounds and what research interests they bring to the college. Andrea C. Borowczak, Ed.D. Professor and School…

UCF Counselor Education Doctoral Graduate Achieves Triple Knight Status

Sarah Mendoza is looking forward to a career in higher education, teaching the next generation of counselors, and advocating for systemic change through the power of empathy education as she graduates this weekend from the UCF’s Counselor Education doctoral program.  Her passion for mental health started back in 2002 when she first joined UCF as an…