May 5, 2022
Student and professor work on projector and screen

UCF’s first class of students in the new Themed Experience program are set to graduate from the university this spring. A group of 10 grads will be the first to complete the unique master’s degree track for creative interdisciplinary careers in Orlando’s hospitality and tourism industry. UCF is among the first institutions in the country to offer a themed experience program, and 80 percent of the students crossing the commencement stage already have employment in hand.

The graduating students are making headlines:

  • Peter Weishar, a professor and director of UCF’s themed experience graduate programs tells UCF: “The Themed Experience (program) was designed to educate and train the next generation of creative leaders in the themed entertainment industry. Themed experience is more than theme parks. It is utilized in exhibitions, museums, zoos, retail, dining, libraries and can be applied to almost any compelling space designed to convey a story. There could not be a better fit for this program than at UCF, located in the heart of the themed entertainment industry.”
  • WFTV Channel 9 reports: “The degree is quickly making these trailblazers a hot commodity in Central Florida.”
  • Fox 35 says: “This program is still growing, but recent grads have already found success.”
  • “It’s only gonna go up from here,” said recent graduate David Brescia, 33 to the Orlando Sentinel. “For me personally, I’ve seen such a growth in myself and in my experience of being a writer, understanding the industry and getting great opportunities.”

UCF offers two options for graduate students wishing to pursue careers in themed experience: a three-year MFA in Theatre – Themed Experience track and a two-year M.S. in Themed Experience.