UCF Names New Director for School of Modeling, Simulation and Training (BY ZENAIDA GONZALEZ KOTALA)

The University of Central Florida today named Grace Marie Bochenek ’98PhD its new director of the School of Modeling, Simulation and Training following a national search.

Bochenek brings more than 25 years of experience working in defense and energy research, most recently as director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory in Pittsburgh.

Her experience driving innovation through technology and leading large organizations at a national level make her a good fit for the advanced and multi-facetted school, especially because of the importance of modeling and simulation to the nation and region.

The school is home to the nationally recognized Institute for Simulation & Training and UCF’s Modeling & Simulation Graduate Program. The institute is renowned for its cutting-edge, human-centered simulation research, while the graduate program produces graduates who are sought out by government and commercial companies looking for employees who can lead in these evolving fields.

The school is in Central Florida Research Park alongside more than 100 companies and the National Center for Simulation and Training. Orlando serves as a national hub for the simulation industry, employing more than 30,000 people and contributing $6 billion to Florida’s regional GDP, according to the Florida High Tech Corridor and Orlando Economic Partnership.