UCF President John C. Hitt to retire June 2018

Photo by Shana Medel. UCF President John C. Hitt speaks to an audience of students and faculty at the opening of Global UCF, located on Memory Mall.

UCF President John C. Hitt announced his retirement effective June 30, 2018, in an email Tuesday morning.

“The time is right for this decision because I’ve never felt better about UCF,” Hitt, 76, said.

During his first year of presidency in 1992 he established five key goals: offer the best undergraduate education in Florida, achieve international prominence in research, provide an international focus to UCF’s curricula and research, become more inclusive and diverse and be the leading partnership university in the nation.

More than 25 years later, UCF is still making strides to achieve these goals. At the Oct. 17 UCF State of the University Address, Hitt praised UCF’s diversity rate of 46 percent, applauded the school’s state-of-the-art facilities and commended UCF’s future projects such as the downtown campus.

“We are hiring hundreds of talented new faculty, attracting the highest-achieving students in our history and making impacts in Orlando, the state and nation,” Hitt, UCF’s fourth president, said in the email.

Hitt emphasized that this is the right time for his retirement as it will provide momentum for UCF continue on its path to success.

UCF Board of Trustees Chairman Marcos Marchena will create a search committee for UCF’s next president, which will include trustees and representatives of the UCF community, according to Hitt’s announcement.

Hitt and his wife Martha expressed their gratitude and love for the campus.

“When we first visited campus, we had a powerful feeling that UCF was a special place,” he said.

“We could never have imagined then how special it would become.”