Alumni CLASnotes Spring 2006
In This Issue:

Florida Tomorrow

The gift that gives back

What is Florida Tomorrow? Here at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, we believe it's an opportunity, one filled with promise and hope. It's that belief that informs CLAS's capital campaign to raise $65 million. The Florida Tomorrow campaign will shape our college, but its ripple effect will also touch the state of Florida, the nation and the entire world. Florida Tomorrow is pioneering research and spirited academic programs. It's a fertile environment for inquiry, teaching, and learning. It's being at the forefront to address the challenges facing all of us, both today and tomorrow.

A unique feature of this campaign is that donors can support the university in non-traditional ways such as gifts of real estate, planned giving, IRA gifts under the pension protection act, and gift-matching opportunities.

Recently, two individuals answered the call of action and contributed to CLAS through a deferred life insurance policy: Dr. Shaun P. Herness and Dr. M. Ivan Rusilko jointly manage this investment trust fund, which will eventually equal a sum much larger than the $1 million base amount.

The funds are specifically intended for a program in visual communications to teach and research visual politics and political campaigning. The program will be overseen in conjunction with the Bob Graham Center for Public Service and the College of Journalism and Communications.

Herness, a public relations and political consultant and college professor, graduated from UF in 1996 with a Ph.D. in Political Science. Rusilko, a graduate of Mercyhurst College and Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine in Erie, Pennsylvania, is a sports nutritionist and personal trainer. Both wanted to make a positive impact at UF and, by including CLAS as a beneficiary of their policy, the impact of their generosity will be immense. There is a need to bring the study of visual culture together with the study of politics. The research conducted as a result of this gift will be a trailblazing addition to the study of politics.

"We hope to see UF reach out to a set of younger, professionally based alumni in an effort to cultivate positive donor relationships," said Herness.

  • As of October 31, CLAS has raised $50 million of its $65 million goal.
  • The university, as a whole, hopes to raise $1.5 billion by 2012.
  • Donors can choose to make a gift to 29 different specific areas across the university. The donations go to support faculty, campus enhancement, undergraduates and programs/research.

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