Alumni Reunion Challenge

STEPUP challenge Met with $44,631.93


Alumni and friends exceeded the challenge by raising $44,631.93 in 25 days.

Missed the Challenge? You can still support STEPUP students!

The UF Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering’s Alumni Reunion Challenge focuses on supporting a key initiative that helps Power the New Engineer to Transform the Future.

To kick off the inaugural year, the college will be encouraging alumni participation in support of our STEPUP students leading up to this fall’s Alumni Reunion on November 10th.


Gene Fraser (B.S. CHE ’76), vice president of programs, quality and engineering at Northrop Grumman, and Dr. Mike Zamora (Ph.D., MSE ’97), Americas regional director of ExxonMobil Chemical Company, are this year’s challengers. Together, they have generously committed up to $25,000 to match alumni contributions during the 2018 Alumni Reunion Challenge.


Raise $25,000 in 25 days in honor of STEPUP’s 25th anniversary. All contributions made during the challenge, up to $25,000, will be matched by Gene and Mike, DOUBLING the impact for STEPUP students. The Challenge begins on October 16 (25 days before the Reunion) and will culminate with a celebration and announcement of the results at the Gator Engineering Alumni Reunion on November 10th


  • RSVP to the Reunion: Make a gift during registration for the reunion. This can be done before or during the challenge period.
  • Make a Gift Online: If you’re unable to attend the Alumni Reunion this year, you can make a gift online. 
  • Day of Reunion: The college will celebrate STEPUP and reveal the results of the Alumni Reunion Challenge. You can make a last minute gift during check-in. 

Many employers also have matching gift programs and will match any charitable contributions made by their employees. Find out if your company qualifies. 

Gifts of $100 or more will count toward the SEC Engineering Challenge

Questions? Contact Michelle Hagan, Development Coordinator, at or 352-294-7946.


What are the benefits of STEPUP?

STEPUP (Successful Transition and Enhanced Preparation for Undergraduates Program)  is designed to help students – oftentimes first-in-family collegians – succeed as a New Engineer. STEPUP helps them get the best start in their studies, form friendships with fellow students that will see them through the tough courses and the exhilarating discoveries, and learn to find themselves and lead others. The challenging nature of STEPUP prepares the New Engineer to STEP OUT into the world, ready to transform the future and establish a new platform for life in the smart society of the future

How does the program work? 

Any incoming UF freshmen who has elected engineering as their college path can apply for the STEPUP program. Students from under-represented populations (46% of the 2018 cohort) find STEPUP especially beneficial. Students accepted into the program participate in a rigorous 6-week residential summer component (June – July) that incorporates team building activities, a strong curriculum, industry and faculty speakers, student panels, and corporate tours. Learn more about STEPUP.

How can we all help?

Student retention, involvement, graduation and ultimately, career placement and advancement, is the focus of our college. The college covers many of the costs for program including housing, meals, tuition and fees, corporate tours and more. In order to continue the momentum for more students to become successful New Engineers, we are asking alumni and friends to step up and raise $25,000 in the 25 days before our Alumni Reunion on November 10.