About the College

Timeline Timeline

Highlights in the College’s History


1906               University News, forerunner of Independent Florida Alligator, first published.

1915               Maxwell Newton Beeler joins faculty of the College of Agriculture as first part-time teacher of journalism.  First class, “Agricultural Journalism,” taught in Spring Semester 1916.

1925               Legislature approves appropriation for setting up Department of Journalism and hiring a full-time professor, Orland Kay “O.K.” Armstrong.

1927               Faculty expands to two as Elmer J. Emig arrives.

1928               First degrees in journalism conferred in June. WRUF-AM goes on air.

1929               Elmer J. Emig named Department head, July 1, 1929.

1947               In summer term, first master’s degree conferred.

1948               Faculty expands to three when John Paul Jones, Jr., arrives.

1949               School of Journalism founded, July 1, 1949. Rae O. Weimer named Director of School. WRUF-FM goes on air.

1950               School of Journalism accredited, July 1, 1950.

1953               School expands to School of Journalism and Communications.

1955               School accredited in Advertising. School moves to Stadium Building.

1956               University’s first teaching by television started in School.

1958               Board of Control designates University of Florida to have only state School of Journalism and Communications in Florida.

1958               WUFT-TV goes on air. School accredited in Radio-Television.

1959               James “Mickey” Ellenberg, Jr., becomes 500th journalism graduate at June Commencement.

1967               Board of Regents votes for School to become College.

1968               First students enrolled in the College of Journalism and Communications. John Paul Jones, Jr., named Dean of College.

1969               College reaches all-time high of 792 students to become largest U.S. program in undergraduate enrollment.  100th student graduated from master’s program.

1970               Communication Research Center becomes a full-time operation.

1972               College departmentalized into Advertising, Broadcasting, Journalism, and Public Relations.

1973               Independent Florida Alligator becomes independent and moves off-campus.

1976               Ralph L. Lowenstein named Dean of College. School accredited in Public Relations.

1980               College moves into Weimer Hall in spring quarter.

1980               College initiates “Professional Summer” program for faculty members.

1981               WUFT-FM goes on air.

1986               500th student graduated from master’s program. The Joseph L. Brechner Center for Freedom of Information was established.

1989               W10BR (now WRUF) goes on the air.

1990               In May, first two doctoral degrees in mass communication conferred.

1994               Terry Hynes becomes first woman dean of the College.

1997               Documentary Institute opens and the College offers a new degree plan in documentary production.

1998               Department of Advertising is certified as an Institute by the International Advertising Association becoming the first fully certified institute in the United States.

1999               Marion B. Brechner Citizens Access Project is endowed. College offers a new joint Juris Doctor/Ph.D. in mass communication. College awards its 50th Ph.D. degree.

2000               The Graduate Division was officially renamed the Division of Graduate Studies and Research.

2002               New addition to Weimer Hall which houses the Radio Reading Service was dedicated.

2004               College awards its 100th Ph.D. degree and first MADV degrees

2007               John Wright named dean.  Journalism Master Lecturer Mike Foley named UF Teacher of the Year.

2008               College creates country’s first endowed chair in Public Interest Communications. ABC News opens bureau at Weimer Hall.

2010               Brechner Citizens Access Project becomes Brechner First Amendment Project.  WUFT Noticias begins broadcasting Spanish-language news. The College and the University Athletic Association announce a partnership that moves GatorVision, the multimedia operations unit of UAA, to Weimer Hall.  Journalism Associate Professor Norm Lewis named UF Teacher of the Year.

2011               WRUF-TV 24-hour weather and sports station debuts.

2012               Innovation News Center opens providing news to radio, television and digital properties. Matt Sheehan becomes the first director.

2013               Diane McFarlin is second woman and first CJC alumnus to become dean.

2014               College chosen to house and develop the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

2015               The Agency strategic communication agency launches.  Andy Hopson becomes first director.  Public Interest Communications Chair Ann Christiano named UF Teacher of the Year.

2016               STEM Translational Communication program was conferred with Center status. Hatch content incubator is launched. New sports and media specialization is offer in Journalism Department.

2017              Journalism Department Chair Ted Spiker named UF Teacher of the Year. Media Effects and Technology Lab opens.  Journal for Public Interest Communications — the College’s first academic journal — debuts.

2018              College re-accredited by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. Public Interest Program conferred with Center status.