The University of Miami’s iconic symbol—the green and orange split U—can be found in one of the most popular locations on campus.

Points of Pride

For a snapshot of notable achievements that took place at the University of Miami in 2014, browse the Points of Pride website, view the flipbook, or download the PDF.

Nationally Ranked

For the sixth year in a row the University of Miami was ranked in the top 50 in U.S. News & World Report’s annual "Best Colleges" issue. In the 2015 report, UM is ranked No. 48 out of 268 institutions nationwide.

U.S.News & World Report listed several UM graduate programs in its 2014 America’s Best Graduate Schools edition, including: the School of Law’s program in tax law, No. 5; the College of Arts and Sciences’ earth sciences program, No. 39; and several health-related graduate programs, including physical therapy, No. 9; clinical psychology, No. 32; nursing-midwifery, No. 34; and health care management, No. 46. The School of Education and Human Development is ranked No. 46 among its best schools of education for graduate studies.

The Miller School of Medicine’s Bascom Palmer Eye Institute was rated the nation’s No. 1 ophthalmology program for the tenth consecutive year in U.S. News’s annual 2014 Best Hospitals rankings.

Financial Times ranked the School of Business Administration’s Executive MBA program No. 19 among all U.S. stand-alone Executive MBA programs, and No. 1 in Florida.

Hispanic Business magazine ranked the School of Business Administration No. 9 in the country for Hispanic students.

The University is ranked No. 28 on the Top 100 Social Media Colleges list from, which tracks how schools engage audiences through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, iTunes, and other social media.

Princeton Review named UM a Best Southeastern College in 2014, and ranked it No. 3 for Race/Class interaction.

The University of Miami is ranked No. 193 of 400 top world universities by the Times Higher Education, which bases its 2012-2013 World University Rankings on teaching, research, knowledge transfer, and international outlook.

The Active Times ranked the University of Miami No. 39 on its list of the 50 Fittest Colleges, schools that emphasize on keeping students active, promote athletics, and provide healthy dining options.

Bright New Students

The average SAT score of the incoming freshman class was 1331 (the highest in the institution’s history).

Our student selectivity ranking reached an all-time high of 36, up from 39 in 2012.

About half of new freshmen graduated in the top 5% of their high school class, and 72 percent graduated in the top 10%.

Continuing the Momentum  

By the end of 2013, the University of Miami raised more than $1.19 billion from more than 116,000 donors to Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami.

More than 40 endowed scholarships have been created through Momentum2. Much of the success of University of Miami students can be tied to the generosity of our donors who support scholarship and student enrichment.

More than 2,800 young alumni stepped up to support Momentum2, reacting to the unique GOLDstein Family Challenge. Former Hurricane football player Sean Goldstein, B.B.A. ’12, and his parents, Sandy B.B.A. ’81, M.B.A. ’85, and Cindy, B.S.N. ’79, pledged to donate $25,000 to scholarships if 2,013 young alumni contributed. The Goldsteins increased their pledge another $10,000 due to the program’s success. In all, 2,821 young alumni contributed.

Momentum2 provides funding to our dedicated physicians and faculty who provide clinical care and conduct life-changing research that is making a difference to people in our community and across the globe.

Athletics Achievements

March Madness was in full swing in 2013 as the UM men’s basketball team, which recorded the greatest season in program history, clinched its first Atlantic Coast Conference regular season title on March 9, when it defeated Clemson 62-49 at the BankUnited Center. The team went on to win its first-ever ACC Tournament title. In the NCAA Tournament, Miami advanced to the Sweet 16. Basketball head coach Jim Larrañaga closed the season as ACC, Associated Press, Naismith, and Henry Iba Coach of the Year.

Women’s tennis also clinched its first Atlantic Coast Conference title. The International Tennis Association named women’s tennis head coach Paige Yaroshuk-Tews Coach of the Year for the Southeast Region.

According to the NCAA’s Academic Progress Rate statistics, two teams—women’s golf and women’s cross country—earned perfect scores of 1,000. Every Hurricanes program registered an APR score of at least 945, and 38 student-athletes from 16 teams were selected for 2012-2013 All-ACC Academic teams.

Hurricane student-athletes recorded a Graduation Success Rate (GSR) of 92 percent, marking the ninth year the University of Miami has exceeded the NCAA average. Eight UM teams—men’s diving, golf, women’s tennis, baseball, women’s track and field/cross country, rowing, women’s swimming, and volleyball—recorded GSR marks of 100 percent.

Blake James was named director of athletics after serving as interim director since October 2012. Before joining the Hurricanes, James was director of athletics at the University of Maine.

University of Miami diver Sam Dorman captured his first career national championship in August 2013, earning gold in the 1-meter event on the opening day of competition at the 2013 AT&T National Diving Championships hosted by the University of Iowa.

Representing every sport at the University of Miami, 156 student-athletes in August 2013 are named to the 57th annual Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Honor Roll, the qualifications for which include a grade point average of 3.0 or better for the entire academic year.

Breakthrough Research

In December 2012, doctors at The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis perform the first-ever FDA-approved Schwann cell transplantation in a patient with a new spinal cord injury. The procedure is part of a Phase 1 clinical trial designed to evaluate its safety and feasibility as a potential treatment for patients with such injuries.

In February 2013 Ricardo Komotar, assistant professor of neurological surgery and director of surgical neuro-oncology at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, uses an innovative laser technique to eradicate a brain tumor from a 64-year-old West Palm Beach man. The laser tumor ablation was performed at University of Miami Hospital, the only facility in the southeastern U.S. offering the procedure.

Designed and built by students in the School of Architecture’s Design-Build Studio, a 200-square-foot eco-tent is unveiled in Everglades National Park’s historic Flamingo section, which had lacked overnight camping facilities since a one-two punch from Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma destroyed a small hotel and cottages at the park in 2005. The eco-tent is a prototype for future sustainable accommodations at the park.

Bringing Florida into the NIH-funded Women’s Interagency HIV Study, Miller School of Medicine HIV/AIDS researchers in February 2013 are awarded $8.5 million over five years to provide clinical, behavioral, and basic science insights into the changing demographics of the HIV epidemic among women in the United States.

The Office of Naval Research awarded the Center for Southeastern Tropical Advanced Remote Sensing (CSTARS) a three-year, $16.5 million contract to continue collecting, processing and furnishing data from commercial satellites. Operated by the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, CSTARS radar images help scientists understand oceanographic and terrestrial processes and aid in humanitarian relief operations during natural and manmade disasters.

The College of Engineering’s new Fortinent Cyber Security Lab, funded by the California-based Internet security provider Fortinet, is designing revolutionary ways to keep digital information safe.

In October 2013, oceanographers from the University of Miami, Duke University, and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution were awarded $16 million in grants from the National Science Foundation to deploy a new observing system in the subpolar region of the North Atlantic that will measure the ocean’s overturning circulation, a key component of the global climate system.

Exclusive Events

Two U.S. Supreme Court justices visit the University of Miami just days apart. During a February 1 conversation with UM President Donna E. Shalala at the BankUnited Center, presented in association with Books & Books, Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor presents a look into her life, relating some of the stories from her new book, My Beloved World. Ten days later, students, faculty, staff and guests get an insight into the thinking of Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who teaches a Constitutional Law class at the School of Law and delivers the Robert B. Cole Distinguished Jurist Lecture at the BankUnited Center Fieldhouse.

During her March visit to the University of Miami, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow addressed some of the topics in her new book, Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power, and offered students advice on activism.

Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in March shared with the UM community his thoughts on “The Science of Beauty and the Beauty of Science.”

Alumnus Will Allen, who was the first African-American student-athlete to play basketball for UM and now leads a Milwaukee-based urban agricultural organization called Growing Power, delivered a talk about his strategies on how to transform the production and delivery of healthy foods to underserved communities.

Famed primatologist Jane Goodall, Hon. ’93, spoke to an audience of thousands in April about her groundbreaking studies of chimpanzees in Tanzania and the challenges our planet faces in the future.

Cuban blogger Yoani Sánchez, the Cuban dissident blogger who has achieved international fame for her criticism of the Castro government, visited campus twice, in April and October. She toured the Cuban Heritage Collection, met with students and taught a class at UM’s Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies.

In November celebrated lawyer Alan Dershowitz – Harvard Law School professor, political commentator and author – had a spirited conversation with School of Law Dean Patricia D. White at the BankUnited Center Fieldhouse attended by several hundred people and presented by the University and Books & Books. Dershowitz was promoting his new book, Taking the Stand, My Life in the Law.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Calderón paid a special visit to the University of Miami in December to talk about the growing opportunities amid the growing promise of peace in his nation, South Florida’s second largest trading partner. UM President Donna E. Shalala presented Santos Calderón the University of Miami President’s Medal at the event, which was co-sponsored by UM’s Center for Latin American Studies and UM’s Center for Hemispheric Policy.

Accelerating Academics

A record nine students from five UM schools and colleges received Fulbright scholarships to conduct research and teach during the 2013-2014 academic year in eight different countries: Ecuador, Germany, Mexico, Malaysia, Poland, Sweden, Tanzania, and Wales.

The University launched a brand-new undergraduate curriculum called the Cognates Program of General Education. Unique among higher education, the curriculum allows students to take courses throughout the University’s diverse array of schools, colleges, and disciplines. Students are able to fine-tune their academic path by choosing Cognates (sets of at least three related courses) that tap into their individual interests and career goals.

The UM Debate Team, which won the national championship for the forensics and debate honorary Delta Sigma Rho-Tau Kappa Alpha in March, advanced to No. 8 in the 2013 National Debate Tournament Rankings. UM holds court over more than 100 other schools, including Northwestern, Harvard, Vanderbilt, and Emory.

A UM team of two M.B.A. students and three M.D./M.B.A. students placed third among 24 collegiate teams addressing the issue of world sanitation and its impact on China’s foreign aid policy at Emory University’s Global Health Case Competition in March.

Leading the University of Miami into the next frontier of education, the Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology has established a unique degree program that will enable industry and government scientists to remain on the job—and in their labs—while earning a Doctor of Philosophy in Industrial Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

For the fourth time, the School of Nursing and Health Studies has received a prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Careers in Nursing grant, which will support ten students in the school’s Accelerated B.S.N. program during the 2013-14 academic year.

To the surprise of students, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius appears as a guest lecturer in UM President Donna E. Shalala’s class, U.S. Health Care Crisis: The Politics of Health Care Reform, on April 1, 2013. Sebelius discusses how the Affordable Care Act will benefit Americans, from outlawing the denial of coverage to people with pre-existing conditions to requiring all new health care plans to offer key preventive services with no out-of-pocket costs.

Mary Bartlett Bunge, professor of cell biology, neurological surgery, and neurology at the Miller School of Medicine’s Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, was elected to the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine. In another remarkable achievement, Bunge also received a five-year renewal of NIH funding for her 39-year-old individual research grant.

Transforming the Face of the U

University of Miami’s new Student Activities Center (SAC) opened in August 2013, with a formal dedication of the Student Center Complex – which includes the SAC, the renovated Whitten University Center, the redesigned UC Patio, the U Statue and the UC Rock – taking place on November 7, 2013.

The SAC, an impressive building overlooking Lake Osceola, was made possible by a $20 million lead gift from the Fairholme Foundation, and additional donations of $5 million from alumni and UM supporters. Students also played a major role, approving a new fee to help pay for construction. The 119,000-square-foot building provides a new home to numerous student organizations, a student lounge, a Grand Ballroom, and a new Rathskeller.

The Theodore G. Schwartz and Todd G. Schwartz Center for Athletic Excellence, named by father and son donors and a part of the Isadore Hecht Athletic Center, was dedicated in October 2013. The 34,000-square-foot multipurpose facility showcases enhanced football facilities, including a football locker room, players’ lounge, Gallery of Champions celebrating the legacy of Hurricane Athletics, and a new academic center for student-athletes.

The new Patricia and Harold Toppel Career Center, doubling the space of the original Toppel Career Center, had its soft opening in late 2013, with dedication ceremonies slated for early 2014. The 12,000-square-foot center made possible by a generous gift from UM alumna and Trustee Patricia Toppel features the latest innovative technology and space for workshops, panel discussions and interview sessions.

Also in 2013, the University opened a new, 37,700-square-foot neuroscience building adjacent to the Cox Science Center, creating an interactive hub for interdisciplinary health research based on neurological imaging. The facility houses a cooperative group of research personnel from the psychology and biology departments, as well as other UM departments and the Miller School of Medicine.

Updated December 2013