Florida Tech Receives $1 Million Donation for Pandemic Challenges

Contribution from The University Financing Foundation

Panther Dining Hall is among the Florida Tech buildings previous support from The University Financing Foundation helped make possible.

MELBOURNE, FLA. — The University Financing Foundation (TUFF) has contributed $1 million to help Florida Tech in any way needed during these challenging times.

Atlanta-based TUFF is a developer and advisor focused on creating vibrant physical environments for institutions of education and research. Founded in 1982, TUFF’s mission is to help these institutions obtain facilities and equipment at below-market costs.

TUFF assisted Florida Tech in the past in the building of L3Harris Village student housing, Panther Dining Hall, the Panther Aquatic Center and the L3Harris Center for Science and Engineering.

This gift honors Florida Tech President Dwayne McCay, who has worked closely with TUFF for more than a decade, and former Florida Tech Vice President of Financial Affairs Jack Armul. TUFF CEO Kevin Byrne said in making this gift that McCay and Armul’s steadfast support of the vision for Florida Tech’s success and their professionalism helped realize this vision.

The $1 million gift demonstrates how strongly TUFF values the mission of the university and its past, current and future impact on the United States and the world.

The gift also honors the four board members who lead TUFF.

  • Thomas Ventulett, chairman of the board and a founding principal of Thompson, Ventulett Stainback & Associates (TVS). After founding TVS in 1968, Ventulett received over 200 design awards, including a National AIA Honor Award for McCormick Place in Chicago and Honor Award – Urban Design for the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. In 2002, TVS received the National Architecture Firm Award, the highest honor bestowed by the American Institute of Architects.
  • Thomas Hall III, vice chairman and co-founder of TUFF. A 1958 graduate of Georgia Tech’s industrial engineering program, Hall spent 13 years assisting with alumni development for his alma mater, founding and directing the Office of Resources Development. He proudly served as TUFF’s Chief Executive Officer from 2001 until March of 2018, when he formally retired.
  • A.J. Robinson, director, and president of Central Atlanta Progress, a private business association founded in 1941 that remains one of the most effective advocacy organizations in Atlanta. Robinson, a native of Knoxville, Tennessee, is also the president of the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District.
  • David M. McKenney. In 1972, McKenney joined his family’s mechanical contracting firm, McKenney’s Inc., as vice president. He became president and CEO in 1973 and led the company for 36 years, presiding over its growth from $5 million and 100 employees to over $200 million and 800 employees. Eventually, McKenney’s became one of the country’s largest privately held mechanical contracting and engineering firms.

Learn more about TUFF and its partnership with Florida Tech at https://www.tuff.org/florida-tech-campus-expansion/.

 

About Florida Institute of Technology

Florida Tech was founded in 1958 at the dawn of the Space Race that would soon define the Atlantic coast of Florida and captivate the nation. Now the premier private technological university in the Southeast, Florida Tech is a Tier 1 Best National University in U.S. News & World Report and one of just nine schools in Florida lauded by the Fiske Guide to Colleges. Florida Tech is ranked among the top 5 percent of 20,000 degree-granting institutions worldwide in the 2020-21 World University Rankings and has been named a Top College and Best Value University for 2019 by Forbes. Florida Tech offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in aeronautics and aviation, engineering, computing and cybersecurity, business, science and mathematics, psychology, education and communication. Learn more about our relentless pursuit of greatness at www.fit.edu.

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