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AdventHealth and Orlando Health Contribute Million$ Toward UCF's New Nursing School

Analysis  |  By Carol Davis  
   July 07, 2023

A planned expansion will boost nursing enrollment by at least 50%.

With $5 million each in combined commitments from AdventHealth and Orlando Health, the University of Central Florida College of Nursing has moved closer to a new building at Lake Nona that will significantly boost enrollment and expand both health systems’ nursing workforces.

The $70 million, 90,000-square-foot building also will expand the college’s capacity to educate future nursing faculty members, according to the university.

UCF graduates about 260 nurses annually, though last year it added 100 students beyond its usual enrollment in response to the state’s demand for new nurses. The expansion will enable the college to increase enrollment by at least 50%, significantly boosting Florida’s nursing workforce. Indeed, 85% of the school’s 16,000 nursing alumni live and work in Florida.

Alliances between hospitals or health systems and colleges are becoming more common as healthcare leaders search for creative ways to bolster the number of nursing students, and thus, their nursing pipeline.

"Ensuring we have well-educated, highly trained, and skilled nurses to meet Florida’s growing healthcare needs is a pressing challenge for the entire healthcare sector," says Randy Haffner, CEO of AdventHealth Florida. "Partnering with leading educational institutions such as UCF is absolutely vital to ensuring these efforts are successful."

"We are excited about our long-term partnership with UCF as we continue to strategically plan nursing workforce opportunities for the future," says Karen Frenier, senior vice president, human resources and chief nurse executive, Orlando Health.

Each hospital’s gift, in addition to contributing to the new building, will support students with the creation of a scholars’ program named in their honor. Each of those programs will provide tuition assistance to 10 senior BSN students annually and establish a paid summer internship program for an additional 10-15 students annually.

UCF continues to seek philanthropic investments in the new building, as it nears the goal of raising $70 million needed to break ground. To date, more than $26 million has been raised through philanthropy, which will be combined with $43.7 million committed by the State of Florida.

"AdventHealth and Orlando Health have been valued, transformative partners to UCF as we collaborate to support the health and well-being of our community," says Alexander N. Cartwright, UCF president. "Their continued partnership and generous investment in UCF’s College of Nursing will make a difference in our region for generations to come."

Carol Davis is the Nursing Editor at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.

Photo credit: JHVEPhoto /


University of Central Florida College of Nursing is expanding with construction of a $70 million building.

The expansion will also will increase the college’s capacity to educate future nursing faculty members,

85% of the school’s nursing alumni stay in Florida.

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