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UCF’s Next President: I’m Going To Be Focused On Value

UCF's Dale Whittaker. Whittaker announced his resignation Feb. 19. / Photo: UCF

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University of Central Florida’s incoming president Dale Whittaker says he’s going to spend a lot of his first months in office listening to students, faculty and community leaders. Whittaker will step into the job this summer with three long-term goals.

In the short-term Dale Whittaker wants to lure talented faculty. He also wants to become the university’s chief storyteller: spreading the word that UCF produces talent at the lowest cost in the nation.

“I’m going to be very, very focused on value,” said Whittaker. “On making sure that we not only have a high-quality degree, but that it even gets better at a cost that is affordable for families and is a good steward of taxpayer dollars.”

As for his long-term goals, Whittaker wants to make UCF Florida’s preeminent university, develop the Lake Nona health sciences campus for the 21st century, and turn the downtown campus into an innovation hub.

Whittaker says he has left the provost job to focus on becoming president.

He joined UCF in 2014 after serving in leadership roles at Purdue and Texas A&M. He is also a professor of agricultural and biological engineering.

He was selected to replace John Hitt, who will retire this summer after 26 years as president.

UCF is one of the largest universities in the nation with a student population of more than 66,000.


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Catherine Welch

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