UCF was founded as Florida Technological University in 1963 and renamed in 1978, making it one of newer guys on the block when compared to other state schools. Our mascot is a knight named Knightro, who can be found dancing across campus and on the web. And yes, while it is very cool that the campus is a quick drive away from the theme parks, there are many other things that make it a great place to work hard, and play harder.
Everything’s Bigger in Orlando
“Under Construction Forever” couldn’t be a more fitting name because the school is indeed, always under construction. In the past four years I have witnessed the school build new dorms, classroom buildings, advising centers AND they just recently announced that they are expanding the Library and updating the area by the arena. UCF’s massive size even earned it a spot on our Top 5 Colleges in Florida
However, since it is largest university in the US by undergrad enrollment and the second largest for total enrollment, I don’t think the students are really mind – except for when construction blocks part of the parking lot. But bad news if you think that you will be able to avoid that creepy kid from your 400 person class that you rejected to go on a date with freshman year, because it’s almost almost impossible to go anywhere without bumping into someone you know.
Ladies Night, Tank Tuesday, and Wine-Down Wednesdays are just a couple of things that you need to think about before signing up for that 8 AM class. Most freshmen will say “I can do it, I went to school at 7:30 every day in high school”. PSA: That Zephyrhills bottle of vodka that you siphoned off from your parents bar in high school is nothing compared to power of unlimited free drinks and drafts…don’t take the 8 AM class.
Local nightlife includes the Knight’s Pub, Stagger Inn, and the bar that was rated the “#1 College Bar in America” – Knight Library. And while the convenience of the name of Knight Library comes into play when you are trying to convince your parents that you spent your money on “books” and not loaded Coronas, one can find a change of pace in downtown Orlando.
While downtown is a bit of a drive, there is no shortage of busses that can you for a night on the town – just make sure to not miss the bus ride back or you may come back with some stories.
Superstitions, Traditions, and Interesting Decisions
Being a young school, UCF has worked very hard to create traditions that unite the student body. That hard work has paid off because in 2011 the school’s tradition Spirit Splash received best campus tradition award from the National Association for Campus Activities. Spirit Splash is the annual homecoming pep rally where students run into the Reflection Pond at the same time and have the opportunity to catch a custom UCF rubber ducky (along with possibly some other things)
Spirit Splash is also the only time when students can go into the campus fountain. Be careful when you’re walking around in the Student Union because one wrong step and you can end up having some trouble walking across the stage at graduation…or at least that’s what they say. The superstition goes like this – if you step on the Pegasus seal on the floor of the union, you won’t graduate. Freshmen don’t worry because the seal is roped off most of the time. Unless your luck is like mine, and you step on the seal on the one day it’s not roped off…here’s to hoping that I CAN finish.Click to read Page 2