University of Central Florida

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#78, overall score 53.83/100

Fun Fact:

The UCF Recreation and Wellness center has a 40-foot-high challenge course.

Why should Jewish students attend University of Central Florida?

“The University of Central Florida (Go Knights!) is home to the third-largest Jewish student population outside of the State of Israel. Conveniently located in Orlando, Florida, Jewish students have the opportunity to study at a world class institution, live in a luxury student dorm with Kosher food, and work and play in one of the most vibrant and growing cities in America. If you’re a Jewish student who has always wondered what actually makes this knight different from all other knights, come find out at UCF. Charge On!” — Aaron Weil, Executive Director & CEO, Central Florida Hillel

“The University of Central Florida has a large Jewish population and a very active and vibrant Jewish life! Chabad at UCF hosts year-round events, including holiday programs, Israel events, socials, numerous Jewish study opportunities, and a Mega Shabbat every spring, where hundreds of Jewish students join together to celebrate Shabbat and Jewish pride. And while our exciting programs are known to draw a crowd, perhaps what makes Chabad most unique is our focus on each individual. We are truly available 24/7 to respond to any need that a student may have. UCF is an easy, fun, safe, and lively place to explore or strengthen one’s Jewish identity while receiving a stellar academic experience for a very reasonable cost. UCF has a vibrant Jewish life, beautiful weather all year round, and last year, our football team was undefeated! What more could you ask for?” — Rabbi Chaim Lipskier, executive director, Chabad at UCF


  • Location: Orlando, Fla.
  • Region: South
  • Campus type: Small city
  • Public/Private: Public
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 55,776
  • Jewish undergraduate enrollment: 6,000
  • Jewish population share: 11%
  • Student newspaper: Knight News
  • NCAA Division: I
  • NCAA team: Knights
  • Ultimate Frisbee teams: Dogs of War / Sirens

COST & AID Score: 10.83/15

  • Score: 10.83/15
  • In-state tuition: $6,368
  • Out-of-state tuition: $22,467
  • Room & board costs: $10,011
  • Average annual scholarship/grant package: $5,239
  • Average loan debt: $21,818
  • Scholarship for Jewish students: Milton A. & Louise C. Jentes Scholarship

ACADEMICS Score: 3.33/20

  • Score: 3.33/20
  • Acceptance rate: 50%
  • Student/faculty ratio: 29.6:1
  • Median SAT range: 1150-1320
  • Jewish Studies program: Yes
  • Jewish Studies major: Minor
  • Hebrew major: No

ISRAEL Score: 13/20

  • Score: 13/20
  • Size of Birthright trip: 350
  • School-approved study abroad program in Israel: No
  • Israel Studies center: No
  • Israel-related clubs: Knights for Israel, IAC Mishelanu
  • Jewish Agency for Israel fellow: No
  • BDS vote in last four years: Not proposed

SAFETY Score: 8/11

  • Score: 8/11
  • Anti-Semitic incidents in 2017: 0
  • Campus crime rate: 1.39/1,000 students (low)
  • City crime rate: 60.59/1,000 people (high)
  • LGBT center: Yes

JEWISH LIFE Score: 18.67/34

  • Score: 18.67/34
  • Hillel: Central Florida Hillel
  • Chabad: Chabad at University of Central Florida
  • OU-JLIC: No
  • Jewish fraternities: AEPi, ZBT
  • Jewish sororities: AEPhi
  • Jewish dorm: NorthView
  • Can you get kosher food on the school meal plan? No
  • Chicken soup hotline: Yes
  • Active Hillel clubs: 9
  • Hillel Friday night services: 1
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Hillel: 90
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Chabad: 150
  • Synagogues within 10 miles: 3 (1 Conservative, 2 Reform)
  • Eruv: No
  • Most unique/noteworthy club: Jewber - During the first weeks of classes, Hillel staff take students on “Jewish journeys” on golf carts between classes. It helps relieve the heat of Central Florida and allows Jewish students to meet our team.
  • Where do Jewish students come from? The majority of students come from three counties in south Florida - Palm Beach, Broward and Dade. The second largest group of Jewish students from from Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Do you attend this school? Do you want to tell us more about what life there is like? Take our survey here, and your feedback could be featured in next year’s guide! And if you’re a student or campus professional, join our online community Jewish Campus Confidential, and apply to become a Forward Campus Ambassador.

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