The University of Florida has strengthened its ranking among the nation’s top-10 public universities, rising to the No. 8 spot in the latest U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges list released today. [Read more…] about UF rises to No. 8 in U.S. News list of best public universities
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Consumer sentiment among Floridians dropped 1.9 points in June to 98.3 from a revised figure of 100.2 in May, according to the latest University of Florida Consumer Survey. [Read more…] about Florida consumer sentiment decreases in June
$110 million in state performance funding for 2018-19
The University of Florida will receive more than $110 million in state performance funding for the 2018-19 fiscal year, an investment that it will use to continue its efforts to raise its national stature and become a top-five public research university. [Read more…] about State’s performance funding investment to help UF continue its rise in national stature
The University of Florida has announced the appointment of Dr. Lee Anne Chesterfield as the new Director of the Harn Museum of Art. Chesterfield is currently the Senior Advisor for Museum Planning and Board Relations at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) in Richmond, Virginia, and will begin her appointment at the Harn on July 1.
At the VMFA, Chesterfield serves as the principal advisor to the Director, Alex Nyerges, and oversees all aspects of the museum’s strategic plan and board relations. The VMFA holds nearly 40,000 works of art in its permanent collection and serves more than 600,000 visitors per year with a staff of more than 600 people. Chesterfield joined VMFA in 2004 and has served in a variety of roles including Interim Deputy Director for Art and Education and the museum’s first Curator of Ancient American Art. She directed the opening of VMFA’s first permanent galleries of Native American and
Pre-Columbian Art; managed the VMFA membership department and capital campaign fundraising efforts; and led the successful American Alliance of Museums’ reaccreditation.
Chesterfield, serving as an adjunct professor, has taught courses on art and architecture at the College of William & Mary, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Christopher Newport University. Chesterfield earned her Ph.D. in Art History, specializing in Pre-Columbian Art, from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from James Madison University.
“I am honored to be appointed the new Director of the Harn Museum of Art.” said Dr. Lee Anne Chesterfield. “I look forward to working with the staff and building on its past successes in order to provide stellar collections, exhibitions and educational programs while increasing engagement with art among communities locally, nationally and internationally.”
Chesterfield was appointed after conducting a national search led by Russell Reynolds Associates, which included UF/Harn search committee interviews, director candidate presentations and meetings among University of Florida and Harn Museum staff.
“Dr. Chesterfield is an excellent person to guide the Harn in its next phase of strategic planning,” said Joseph Glover, University of Florida Provost and Senior Vice President. “As Director, she will provide the leadership, vision, and long-range planning for the museum’s financial stability, programmatic excellence, inclusiveness and equity, and continued growth and success.”
About the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art
Founded in 1990, the Harn Museum of Art is an integral part of the University of Florida. The Harn contributes to an interconnected, international community by integrating the arts and culture into curricula throughout the university’s system of colleges and centers. Its holdings include more than 11,100 works in five main collecting areas: Asian art, African art, photography, modern art of the Americas and Europe, and international contemporary art. The museum also has noteworthy collections of Oceanic and Ancient American Art and works on paper. In addition to rotating installations drawn from its permanent collection, the Harn organizes traveling exhibitions, public lectures, panel discussions, academic symposia, and educational programs for adults, students, and children.
The Harn Museum of Art, at 3259 Hull Road in Gainesville, Florida, is part of the University of Florida’s Cultural Plaza, which is also home to the Florida Museum of Natural History and the Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Admission is free. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. The museum is open until 9 p.m. the second Thursday of every month for Museum Nights. The Camellia Court Café is open Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more Information, call 352-392-9826 or visit harn.ufl.edu.
Image source: Harn Museum of Art
Onye P. Ozuzu, dean of the School of Fine and Performing Arts at Columbia College Chicago, has been named dean of the University of Florida College of the Arts.
Effective August 1, Ozuzu will be responsible for formulating and articulating a shared vision for the College of the Arts, leading fundraising efforts and managing the college’s budget and personnel.
A dance administrator, performing artist, choreographer, educator and researcher, Ozuzu has served as dean of the School of Fine and Performing Arts at Columbia College Chicago since 2015 and was previously the chairperson of the department of dance.
During her tenure as dean, she oversaw the school’s $31 million budget, 524 faculty members, 110 staff members and 4,700 students. She provided direction to the nine department chairs of art and art history, business and entrepreneurship, creative arts therapies, dance, design, fashion studies, music, photography and theatre. Additionally, Ozuzu served as chair of a subcommittee on diversity, equity and inclusion.
“Ozuzu has an established record of effective, inclusive and collaborative leadership, an outstanding record of teaching and creative activity, and a demonstrated commitment to the arts,” said Joseph Glover, UF provost and senior vice president of academic affairs.
As a dancer, Ozuzu’s work has focused on the body as technology and explored the intersectionality between many movement forms from tennis to ballet, West African dance to Hatha Yoga, and freestyle House to salsa among others. Her choreography has been performed both nationally and internationally in places such as Manhattan, New Orleans, Senegal and Cuba.
Her most recent work, Project Tool, has focused on the interrelationships between body, task and tool through the process of building wood-sprung dance floors. Project Tool is a 2018 Joyce Award and a 2016 Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist recipient as well as a National Performance Network Creation Fund Project.
“I have dedicated much of my work as a dance artist to cultivating space for diverse dance forms to exist in pluralist relationship to one another,” Ozuzu said. “This has fed into my administrative work where I have fostered balance of visionary and deliberate progress in the arenas of curricular, artistic and systemic diversity, cultural relativity, collaboration and interdisciplinarity. To put it more directly, choreography is composition, composition in collaboration with humans and their energy in time and space; it is systems thinking, as is leadership. I look forward to entering the COTA community of artists and educators as a member and to working together on a deepening impact of the arts at the University of Florida.”
Prior to her Columbia appointment, she was associate chair and director of dance in the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where she was integral to a seven-year overhaul of the departmental mission and curriculum with particular attention to a deep and sustainable integration of diversity, interdisciplinary studies and technology.
Ozuzu earned her Master of Fine Arts in dance and choreography and Bachelor of Arts in English literature at Florida State University.
She succeeds Dean Lucinda Lavelli, who is retiring from a 12-year tenure of deanship, during which Lavelli grew the College of the Arts endowment over $2.5 million— a 37% increase— since 2007 and raised over $6.8 million in scholarships awarded to more than 5,000 students since 2008.
Lavelli has spearheaded multiple interdisciplinary initiatives across the campus and community, including the Creative B Summer Programming that brings together multiple UF departments to present a variety of live, cultural performances and a range of creative activities for students during the Summer B semester. She also served at the forefront of connecting the university with the city of Gainesville, leading the campus and community planning committee that resulted in the Aligning Strategic Initiatives through the Arts Report.
About the College of the Arts
The College of the Arts, previously known as the College of Fine Arts, is one the 16 colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. The College of the Arts offers baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its three fully-accredited schools — the School of Art and Art History, School of Music and School of Theatre and Dance. The college is home to the Center for Arts in Medicine, Center for World Arts, Digital Worlds Institute, University Galleries and the New World School of the Arts in Miami. More than 100 faculty members and more than 1,220 students work together daily to engage, inspire and create. The college hosts more than 300 performances, exhibitions and events each year. Faculty and students also exhibit and perform at other local, national and international venues. To learn more, visit arts.ufl.edu.
UF to Partner with Walmart
Walmart today unveiled a new associate education benefit designed to remove barriers to college enrollment and graduation. The program reflects the company’s commitment to train and educate workers to advance in the jobs of today — and the future. [Read more…] about UF to partner with Walmart in new education benefit for associates
The University of Florida has named Antonio Farias, currently vice president for equity and inclusion/Title IX officer at Wesleyan University, as its first chief diversity officer and senior advisor to the president.
Farias will assume the new post effective July 9. His annual salary will be $280,000.
In his new position, Farias, 52, will hold a cabinet-level spot while overseeing universitywide efforts to advance equity, diversity and inclusion, and establish a new standard of inclusive excellence.
“I am thrilled that Antonio will be joining the University of Florida,” UF President Kent Fuchs said. “He has a strong track record and enjoys tremendous respect at a national level. We created this position because UF, like many other Southern universities, has a legacy that includes not always welcoming people of diverse backgrounds. This is a significant step in addressing the cultural changes that must continue to take place at the University of Florida. Antonio is well-equipped to tackle these challenges.”
At Wesleyan, where he has worked since 2013, Farias has worked closely with the offices of Academic Affairs, Admissions, Student Affairs, and University Relations on issues of inclusion and equity as they relate to race, ethnicity, sex, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, age, veteran status, political affiliation, and national origin in the areas of recruitment, admission, retention, hires, promotion, and fundraising. He has been responsible for maintaining proper university reporting procedures and policies as they pertain to federal and state laws.
From 2005 to 2013, Farias was chief diversity officer for the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, where as the inaugural CDO, he helped develop a metrics-driven, leadership and values centered inclusion and diversity strategy for the academy that eventually shaped strategy for the 47,000-member organization. He also developed retention programs for faculty as well as students of color, first-generation students, women, LGBTQ, and students of various faith/non-faith backgrounds; implemented pre-orientation programs for first-generation and students of color; and conducted inclusion and diversity workshops throughout the Coast Guard leadership framework. Prior to that, he held positions at Mercy College, Hunter College and Colgate University, all in New York.
“As a product of public education, and an educator who has been graced with seeing real lives impacted by educational opportunities, I’m deeply honored to have been selected as the inaugural CDO at a time when UF is poised to make the next great leap in excellence. My wife and I very much look forward to fully immersing ourselves in the Gainesville community and contributing to the Gator Good.”
Farias said he looks forward to meeting with UF student, faculty and staff and members of the Gainesville community soon after his arrival.
Farias holds a bachelor’s degree in comparative literature and a master’s degree in comparative ethnic studies, both from the University of California, Berkeley. He later earned a master of fine arts degree in creative writing from the University of California, Riverside.
Contact: Steve Orlando, 352-846-3903, email@example.com
University of Florida research spending reached a record $801.4 million in fiscal year 2017, according to a new report to the National Science Foundation.
UF’s response to NSF’s Higher Education Research and Development, or HERD, Survey showed a $10.1 million increase, or 1.3 percent, in total expenditures over 2016’s total of $791.3 million.
Research spending is fueled primarily through individual grants and contracts that are secured by UF faculty in a very competitive funding landscape. This increase reflects progress in the university’s efforts to enhance its impact and reputation.
Expenditures on projects supported with federal agency funding increased $20 million, or 6.6 percent, to $327.3 million while state projects increased $7.3 million, or 5.4 percent, to $142.5 million. Funding from non-profit organizations and foundations rose 15 percent to $42.3 million.
Life sciences research, including health and agricultural research, accounted for $589.8 million, or about 74 percent of the total. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, including the National Institutes of Health, is UF’s largest funding agency.
Engineering accounted for $97.8 million, while physical sciences – like astronomy, chemistry and physics – accounted for $28 million.
“UF’s research enterprise has been on a steady upward trend for many years,” said David Norton, UF’s vice president for research. “Surpassing this milestone of $800 million in research expenditures is testament to the thousands of faculty members who are helping to change the world with their science, and to the staff who guide these projects from proposal to completion.”
NSF collects expenditure data from universities around the country and compiles it into a report that will be released later this year. Last year, based on fiscal year 2016 data, UF ranked 24thamong all universities and 14th among public universities in research expenditures.
Among the largest projects under way in 2017 were a U.S. Department of Agriculture project to refine an inedible seed called Brassica carinata into a renewable jet fuel; a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention project to keep Zika and other vector-borne diseases from gaining a foothold in the United States; and a U.S. Department of Defense project to study a type of heart disease that primarily effects women.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Florida is a top-performing institution nationwide for graduation rates for Latino students, according to a new report from The Education Trust.
The report, released Thursday, shows UF ranks among the top-10 best schools and has the highest graduation rate for Latino students among the top 10 at 87.3 percent, compared with an 88.2 percent graduation rate for white students for a 0.8 percent graduation gap.
The graduation rate is a three-year weighted average for 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Overall, the report found, the past decade has seen tremendous growth in Latino student enrollment and completion, but only 53.6 percent of Latino students who start college as first-time, full-time freshmen earn a bachelor’s degree within six years — a rate that is nearly 10 percentage points below that of their white peers.
Five of the top 10 schools are in California. The sample of 613 institutions includes 344 public institutions and 269 nonprofit private institutions.
The University of South Florida also made the top-performers list. Its graduation rate for Latino students – 66.2 percent – was slightly higher than the rate for white students of 65.6 percent.
“Our findings make clear that colleges and universities have a lot of work to do if they want to fulfill their public purpose to serve as engines of social mobility for all students, including Latino students,” said Wil Del Pilar, vice president of higher education policy and practice at The Education Trust. “As members of Congress contemplate changes to the Higher Education Act, they need to take a close look at what successful colleges are doing and provide resources, support, and a system of accountability to help lower-performing colleges get dramatically better at serving low-income students and students of color.”
The Education Trust is a nonprofit advocacy organization that promotes high academic achievement for all students at all levels, pre-kindergarten through college. Its goal is to close the gaps in opportunity and achievement that consign far too many young people — especially those from low-income families or who are Black, Latino or American Indian — to lives on the margins of the American mainstream.
A new report by The James Madison Institute’s Marshall Center for Educational Options finds that the entire Florida higher education system could be “very well positioned to meet the growing demand for intellectually-serious academic study at an affordable cost.”
Entitled, “Free Expression and Intellectual Diversity: How Florida Universities Currently Measure Up,” the JMI report compiles a variety of different measures that examine how well today’s universities protect free speech, promote a campus culture open to different viewpoints, and respond to speech-bullying by those seeking to drown out viewpoints they oppose.
On all of these measures, the University of Florida ranks among the nation’s leaders. In fact, UF’s ranking tied for 5th nationally in the composite scores of Heterodox Academy, an ideologically-diverse consortium of scholars working to improve viewpoint diversity in their academic fields and institutions. In addition, UF is one of only three dozen universities in the U.S. to claim the highest “green light” rating for protecting free speech given by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).
Six other Florida universities have improved their FIRE ratings since JMI collaborated on a similar report in 2013 – Florida Gulf Coast, Florida International, New College, North Florida, South Florida, and West Florida. Of these, UNF stands out, as it went from “red light” status to “green light” status.
Still, Florida’s higher education system has room for improvement, says JMI President and CEO Dr. Bob McClure. Citing recommendations found in the report, McClure called for “Florida’s university leaders to abolish all ‘speech codes,’ and ‘speech zones.”
“It would be a mistake to think that Florida’s public universities are in no way threatened by the rise of speech-bullying nationwide,” observed report author and Director of JMI’s Marshall Center for Educational Options William Mattox. He cited the University of Missouri’s troubles in the wake of a 2015 speech-squelching incident as a cautionary tale.
“At the same time, it would be an even bigger mistake for Florida higher education leaders to approach this topic with fear and trembling,” Mattox observed. “The campus unrest at many universities around the country gives Florida’s institutions of higher learning an opportunity to distinguish themselves as citadels of free expression, intellectual diversity, and academic excellence.”
The JMI policy brief, including each university’s score, is available HERE.