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Philanthropist Charles E. Schmidt makes a $10 million gift to FAU to create the Dorothy F. Schmidt Center for the Arts and Humanities in memory of his late wife. The donation, which also funds two “Super Chairs” in the humanities and fine arts, ranks as the largest cash gift to academic programs ever received in the history of Florida’s State University System. FAU names its College of Arts and Letters in honor of Dorothy F. Schmidt.

The Division of Nursing becomes the School of Nursing.

The College of Liberal Arts is created and based on the Davie campus.

The Social Science Building and the Science & Engineering Building open on the Boca Raton campus.


The School of Nursing becomes the College of Nursing.

Hillary Rodham Clinton makes a campaign speech in the University Center Auditorium on behalf of her husband, U.S. presidential candidate Bill Clinton.

A group of FAU students and faculty members from the College of Business accept an invitation from a member of the Supreme Soviet to travel to Russia to present concepts of American capitalism. While they are aboard a boat on the Volga River, the Soviet Union collapses. They arrive in Moscow on the first day Russia's pre-Soviet flag has flown in the city since the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. When they return home, they go on a local speaking tour to share their close-up view of history in the making.

The student built and operated FAU-Boat wins the International Human-Powered Submarine Race for the second time.


Former Massachusetts Governor and Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis joins the FAU faculty as a visiting professor of political science.


The Jay and Sharon Raddock Eminent Scholar Chair in Holocaust Studies is established through gifts from Jay and Sharon Raddock and other donors.

FAU is elected to membership in the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, the nation’s oldest higher education professional association.

FAU's intercollegiate teams join the Trans America Athletic Conference (TAAC) and move to NCAA Division I.


The Liberal Arts Building opens on the Davie campus, adjacent to Broward Community College's central campus. FAU and BCC administrators and faculty members develop carefully coordinated four-year degree programs that greatly expand the higher educational opportunities available in Broward.

The Dorothy F. Schmidt Center for Arts and Humanities opens on the Boca Raton campus. The beautiful new complex contains a bell tower that rings on the hour, art studios, classrooms, lecture halls and the Schmidt Gallery.

The College of Education Building opens on the Boca Raton campus.


FAU purchases Barry University’s Port St. Lucie facility to establish a campus on the Treasure Coast, in partnership with Indian River Community College.

Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell joins the faculty as the Tripp, Scott, Conklin & Smith Visiting Professor of Political Science.


The Donnell-Kay Foundation and the estate of Anne Kunkel make donations totaling about $8 million to the Pine Jog Environmental Education Center. When combined with state matching funds, these gifts create an $11 million endowment for Pine Jog's programs and services.

The extensively remodeled FAU-BCC Joint-Use Library opens on the Davie campus.


Sponsored research funding exceeds $24 million.

Manuel Diaz Farms, Inc., of Kendall makes the first of a series of tree donations to FAU, planting some 2,200 royal palms, coconut palms and other native species on the Boca Raton campus, dramatically transforming its appearance. This plus 4,000 more trees provided by Manuel Diaz Farms to beautify the Boca Raton, Davie and Jupiter campuses adds up to a total in-kind donation valued at $1.5 million.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the TAAC championship.


The Schmidt Family Foundation, headed by Richard L. Schmidt, makes a $15 million donation to the University in memory of FAU benefactor Charles E. Schmidt, who died in 1996. The gift supports FAU’s medical education partnership with the University of Miami and funds construction of the Charles E. Schmidt Biomedical Science Center. It sets a new state record for cash gifts to academic programs. FAU names its College of Science in honor of Charles E. Schmidt.

The Herbert and Elaine Gimelstob Eminent Scholar Chair in Judaic Studies is established through donations made by Herbert and Elaine Gimelstob and other donors.

FAU benefactors Eugene and Christine Lynn donate $750,000 to the College of Nursing to establish the Christine E. Lynn Center for Caring, a wide-ranging community outreach service addressing the healthcare needs of underserved populations, particularly at-risk children and the frail elderly.

FAU student Mindy Tyson places first on the national CPA exam, receiving the Gold Medal for her outstanding performance.

Renovation work is completed on General Classrooms South, one of the oldest buildings on the Boca Raton campus.

The Physical Sciences Building opens on the Boca Raton campus.

FAU Student Government named best in the state by Florida Leader magazine; FAU Broward Student Government named best in the nation in its category by NACA.

Governor Lawton Chiles takes part in the groundbreaking ceremony for the University’s John D. MacArthur campus in Jupiter.

The FAU Foundation hosts a gala at the Boca Raton Resort & Club to kick off the University’s first capital campaign, with a goal of $100 million.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the TAAC championship for the second time.

Sponsored research funding exceeds $31 million.


SeaTech, FAU’s state-of-the-art ocean engineering research center at Dania Beach, is dedicated. The keynote speaker is Rear Admiral Paul G. Gaffney, chief of research for the U.S. Navy.

The Education & Science Building opens on the Davie campus.

Carl DeSantis gives $2 million to the College of Business to establish the DeSantis Center, which focuses on preparing students to enter the business side of the motion picture/entertainment industry.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Betty Williams of Northern Ireland is named a Distinguished Visiting Scholar. She and her fellow Nobel Laureate, Archibishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa, make a public presentation called "An Evening of Unity."

The Board of Regents authorizes a football program at FAU.

Howard Schnellenberger, a legendary figure in college football, is named FAU’s first head football coach.

Retired public school teacher Eleanor R. Baldwin of Boca Raton pledges $1.5 million to FAU to fund construction of a presidential residence, which will bear her name.

The Barry and Florence Friedberg Lifelong Learning Center opens on the Boca Raton campus. Funded by generous gifts from the Friedbergs and other donors, the Center serves the educational interests of men and women of retirement age. FAU’s Lifelong Learning Society ranks as the largest in the country.

The Jupiter campus opens and is formally named for the late John D. MacArthur. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation donated the 135 acres on which the campus is built.

The Honors College opens at FAU’s John D. MacArthur Campus at Jupiter. The first honors college in the nation to be built from the ground up, this top-echelon institution offers a four-year liberal arts and sciences curriculum to academically gifted students.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the TAAC championship for the third time.

The baseball team has a record-breaking year, tying the national record for consecutive victories (37).

Sponsored research funding exceeds $36 million.


The Board of Regents is dissolved by action of the Legislature and replaced by individual Boards of Trustees at Florida's public universities.

Scott Adams contributes $2 million to the College of Business to establish the Internet Institute and the Adams Center for Information Technology (IT) Product Management and Entrepreneurship.

The John M. DeGrove Eminent Scholar Chair in Growth Management and Development is established through a gift from an anonymous donor.

The Helen Karpelenia Persson Eminent Scholar Chair in Community Caring is established through a gift from Helen Karpelenia Persson.

The Davimos Family Eminent Scholar Chair in Brain Sciences is established through a gift from Richard H. Davimos.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the TAAC championship for the fourth time.

The 61,000-square-foot Tom Oxley Athletic Center, the only coeducational facility of its kind in the country, opens on the Boca Raton campus.

Sponsored research funding exceeds $37 million.


Terrorists crash airliners into the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon in Washington and a field in Pennsylvania just as President Catanese is preparing to deliver the 2001 State of the University Address in the University Theatre. The address is postponed, replaced by a moment of silence. The University is evacuated after Governor Jeb Bush orders all state facilities closed. Later in the day, residence hall students hold a candlelight vigil in memory of the victims.

Christine E. Lynn makes a gift of $10 million to the College of Nursing, which is named in her honor.

The 12-story Florida Atlantic University/Broward Community College Higher Education Complex opens on the Downtown Fort Lauderdale campus, adjacent to the Reubin O’D. Askew University Tower. It is the first facility in the nation designed to house both university and community college programs.

Students in the Florida Atlantic University’s School of Accounting placed seventh among all colleges and universities nationwide in a study conducted by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

Louis and Anne Green donate $1.5 million to establish the Louis and Anne Green Alzheimer’s Research Center and Care Facility.

Forseti Biosciences, Inc., the University's first biotechnology spin-off company, is founded by Dr. Ramaswamy Narayanan and Dr. Gary Perry of the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science.

The Fighting Owls play their first football game on September 1, 2001, at Miami's Pro Player Stadium against Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, losing 40-7.

The Fighting Owls play their second football game on September 8, 2001, scoring a 31-28 upset victory over No. 22-ranked Bethune-Cookman.

The Lady Owls softball team records a fifth championship, playing in the Atlantic Sun Conference (formerly the Trans America Athletic Conference).

FAU's athletic programs are ranked among the best NCAA Division I programs in the nation by Sports Illustrated.


President Catanese resigns to accept the presidency of the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne.

Voters approve creation of a statewide Florida Board of Governors to oversee the State University System. The Boards of Trustees serving individual universities remain intact.

A team of FAU computer science and engineering students develops CodeBlue, a computer-based health monitoring system that can connect people to their healthcare providers via the web. The project is named one of the year's 10 best student inventions worldwide by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

George Cornell makes a $10 million gift to the Honors College, which is named to honor his late wife, Harriet L. Wilkes.

Tamar and Milton Maltz make a $1 million donation to the Lifelong Learning Society on the Jupiter campus to build the 500-seat Tamar and Milton Maltz Center for Learning and the Performing Arts.

The Charles E. Schmidt Biomedical Science Center is dedicated on the Boca Raton campus.

The three-building Florida Atlantic University/Indian River Community College campus opens in Port St. Lucie, greatly enhancing the access of Treasure Coast residents to higher education.

The Eleanor R. Baldwin House, a presidential residence and University reception center, opens on the Boca Raton campus.

The Kenan Evren Eminent Scholar Chair in Turkish Studies is established through gifts obtained by the Turkish American Business, Education and Cultural Development Organization.

The Office Depot Eminent Scholar Chair in Small Business Research is established through a gift from Office Depot, Inc.

The College of Liberal Arts is merged into the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science to eliminate duplication of programs.

FAU’s first capital campaign ends with $199 million in donations and pledges, almost double its original goal.

The Marching Owls band makes its debut at the season's first FAU football game.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the Atlantic Sun Conference championship for the sixth time.

The men's basketball team wins the Atlantic Sun Conference championship and gets invited to the NCAA Tournament --"the Big Dance."

The baseball team wins FAU's first NCAA Regional Championship, beating No. 3-seeded Alabama and earning a No. 15 national ranking.

FAU's football rivalry with Florida International University is launched on November 23, 2002, with a game that will reward each year's winning team with the Don Shula Trophy. FAU wins the first game, 31-21.

Fall semester enrollment is 23,836.


Fall semester begins with 24,961 students enrolled. FAU has the most diverse student body in the State University System, with minority enrollment of 34.6 percent.

Florida's Lt. Governor, and FAU alumnus, Frank T. Brogan (M.Ed., ’81) is named the fifth president of Florida Atlantic University by the FAU Board of Trustees.

Dr. Ramaswamy Narayanan and Dr. Gary Perry, researchers in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, successfully test a new drug for human colon cancer in animal models.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel speaks at FAU.

The State of Florida awards FAU $10 million to establish the Center of Excellence in Biomedical and Marine Biotechnology, a research facility that will search the waters off Florida's coastline for drugs from natural sources that could be used to treat cancer, heart disease and other serious illnesses.

The Lady Owls softball team wins the Atlantic Sun Conference championship for the seventh time and is listed among the all-time greatest teams in college softball history by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.

FAU football moves to new home field at Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale; Becomes
youngest Division start-up program to compete in the National Championship Playoffs.


FAU football begins 2-year transition to Division I-A status; Begins movement into SunBelt conference.

FAU admits its first students to the University of Miami/ Florida Atlantic University medical school partnership

...and our best days are still ahead!

Copyright 2004 Florida Atlantic University