Released on April 3, 2024
UCF Pegasus seal on the floor of the student union building

Congratulations to this year’s honorees:

Faculty Awards
Jon Decker

Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, College Award
Jonathan Decker ’10PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, Associate Lecturer

Decker has been teaching and mentoring undergraduate students in the College of Nursing for nearly two decades.

The alumnus and advanced practice nurse practitioner also maintains a clinical practice with UCF Health Services.

Desiree Díaz, professor at UCF College of Nursing

Excellence in Graduate Teaching, College Award
Desiree A. Díaz, PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, CNE, CHSE-A, ANEF, FSSH, FAAN, Professor

Díaz, an internationally recognized healthcare simulation expert, joined UCF in 2015 and is the director of the new interdisciplinary Hispanic Serving Healthcare Professionals graduate certificate program.

Her innovative research uses simulation to address healthcare disparities and improve care for underserved patient populations.

Victoria Loerzel

Excellence in Research, College Award
Victoria Loerzel ’07PhD, RN, FAAN, Endowed Professor

Loerzel’s research seeks to improve quality of life for older adults with cancer. She also mentors future nurse scientists as the college coordinator of UCF’s Honors Undergraduate Thesis program.

Her current research includes a $2.5 million NIH grant to test an educational game that seeks to improve symptom management for older adults with cancer.

Faculty Service

(from L to R)

  • Christopher W. Blackwell, Associate Professor, 20 Years of Service
  • Stephen D. Heglund, Senior Lecturer, 20 Years of Service
  • Angeline Bushy, Professor Emerita
  • Maureen Covelli, Associate Professor Emerita
  • Charlotte Neubauer, Associate Instructor, Retired
Staff Awards

Employee Excellence Awards for Student Success
Judy Rechsteiner
Admissions Specialist II, Traditional BSN

In addition, congratulations to Employee Excellence Awards Nominees Christina Grosso and Deanna Williams.

Staff Service
Collage of four UCF College of Nursing staff honored at 2024 Founders' Day
Collage of four UCF College of Nursing staff honored at 2024 Founders' Day
(from L to R, Top to Bottom)

Debra Urban
  • Norma Morell, 5 Years of Service
  • Nicole Phanstiel, 5 Years of Service
  • Patricia Riva, 5 Years of Service
  • Christina Gonzalez, 5 Years of Service
  • Sunny Heyl, 10 Years of Service
  • Tonya LaPrarie, 10 Years of Service
  • Elizabeth LaTorre, 10 Years of Service
  • Ashley Turner, 10 Years of Service
  • Debra Urban, Retired (pictured on left)
Has the UCF College of Nursing Positively Impacted You?

The mission of the College of Nursing at the University of Central Florida is to prepare nurse leaders and patient advocates through excellence in education, research and service.

Find out how to give back to your college, today!

More Stories