USF System Government Relations Newsletter
March 2017
USF System Students Show their Bull Pride on 'USF Day at the Capitol' 
Thank you to those that participated in "USF Day at the Capitol" this year! We had another incredibly successful event with more than 200 students  from around the USF System gathering in Tallahassee on February 8th to advocate for the USF System's legislative priorities and experience government in action.  

Students were joined by President Judy Genshaft and Regional Chancellors Sandra Stone (USFSM) and Sophia Wisniewska (USFSP) for an action packed day at the State Capitol, meeting with more than 50 elected officials including USF alumni legislators, State Reps. Danny Burgess, Shawn Harrison, Ross Spano, Chris Sprowls and Jackie Toledo, as well as other elected leaders from the Tampa Bay area and the Legislature’s higher education committees.

USF Day at the Capitol also included lunch with Florida’s Commissioner of Agriculture, Adam Putnam, who spoke about the need to invest more as a state in higher education and high demand jobs post-graduation. 

Photos from 2017 USF Day at the Capitol 
                                                   USF System students gather in the Florida House Chamber.
 Rep. Jamie Grant (right) speaks with USF students.
USF Alumnus and State Rep. Shawn Harrison (left).
Florida's Lieutenant Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera (center) speaks with USF students .
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam (left) with Rocky the Bull.
USF students and Rocky the Bull with USF Alumnus and State Rep. Ross Spano (back right).
  USF Alumnus and State Rep. Jackie Toledo (center) and USF students  show their Bull pride. 
University of South Florida St. Petersburg officially opens Lynn Pippenger Hall with Ribbon Cutting Ceremony 

On January 17th legislators, community members, students, faculty and staff gathered for a ribbon cutting to celebrate the official opening of the newest building on the USF St. Petersburg  campus, the new home of the Kate Tiedemann College of Business. 

The building was made possible through the support of the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation, with more than $25 million appropriated for the construction project.

"It's just a wonderful testimony to what this community can do when we work together," said Senator Jack Latvala (R-District 16), chair of the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation. 

The 68,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility will better prepare students for jobs that are in high demand, including accounting and finance.

Read more. 
From Left to Right: Sridhar Sundaram, Dean of the College of Business; State Sen. Jack Latvala; Ellen Cotton, USFSP donor; Stephanie Goforth, campus board chair; Kate Tiedmann, College of Business donor, Lynn Pippenger, whom the building is named after; Judy Genshaft, USF System President; Sophia Wisniewska, Regional Chancellor; and St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman.
U.S. Rep Kathy Castor visits USF College of Nursing to Discuss Nursing Workforce Bill Proposal 
On February 13th, U.S. Representative Kathy Castor (D-FL14) met with leaders, faculty and students from USF Health to tour the newly renovated USF College of Nursing George and Marian Miller Center for Virtual Learning and discus the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act  

The proposed legislation, which Rep. Castor helped introduce in the United States Congress, would provide federal funding for advanced programs and initiatives to help prepare top quality nurses. "This bill, if passed, would help prepare the nurses of tomorrow and provide a pathway to good-paying job across the country, especially in our state" said Castor during her visit. 

Read more. 

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor (center) meets with USF College of Nursing students
 2017 Legislative Session begins in Tallahassee on March 7th, 2017 
The annual Legislative Session will convene on Tuesday, March 7th in Tallahassee and we hope we can count on our Bulls Advocates to support and advocate for the USF System’s top priorities.

This year construction funds toward completing the new Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute in downtown Tampa is the USF System’s top priority.  

Among a host of high-priority requests this year, we will be advocating for more funding in the state’s Performance-based Funding and the Preeminence/Emerging Preeminence programs. In both programs, USF continues to be one of the top performers in the state and therefore receives a large portion of the state university system’s funds.  

The USF System is also requesting $2.5 million each for USF St. Petersburg and USF Sarasota-Manatee to hire faculty and boost degree production in Areas of Strategic Emphasis for the state, specifically the STEM disciplines.