FY23 Contributions Report Theme: Securing UF

Each year, Vice President and CIO Elias Eldayrie shares UFIT’s progress made towards Our Purpose. Our Legacy. The University of Florida Strategic Plan for IT: 2020-2025. The progress is reported in the annual publication known as the Contributions Report. The 12-page publication for fiscal year (FY) 2023 is available online in two formats:

Securing UF’s network and UF data is the theme threaded throughout the content sections of the FY23 Contributions Report. Some of the security-based content featured include a section dedicated to achieving HITRUST certification for HiPerGator and a list of new IT security policies approved in FY23. Additionally, VP Eldayrie reports on the progress made towards each of the strategic plan’s six goals.

Anyone with questions about the 2022-2023 Contributions Report is welcome to contact UFIT Communications.

Making Progress on the Goals for IT at UF

Each year, Vice President and CIO Elias Eldayrie shares the progress made towards Our Purpose. Our Legacy. The University of Florida Strategic Plan for IT: 2020-2025. The progress is reported in a publication called the contributions report. The 2021-2022 Contributions Report is now online:


UFIT reports advancements in context of the strategic plan’s six goals:

1. Enable Student Success
2. Empower the Future of Research
3. Accelerate Philanthropic Impact
4. Elevate the Stakeholder Experience
5. Advance an Analytics-Enabled Environment
6. Build a Resilient Cybersecurity Environment

UFIT’s current strategic plan and previous contributions reports are available on the
strategic plan webpage. Anyone with questions about these publications is welcome to contact the UFIT Communications office.

Saira Hasnain Named Associate VP

On March 24, VP and CIO Elias Eldayrie announced the promotion of Saira Hasnain, Ph.D., to associate vice president and deputy CIO. In this role, Saira will continue to oversee the Infrastructure and Communication Technology department while also helping UFIT achieve the goals in the 2020-2025 UF Strategic Plan for IT.

Hasnain’s additional responsibilities include assisting Eldayrie by:

1. Providing leadership and guidance in critical areas of technology planning and strategy.
2. Developing a roadmap to improve UFIT service quality and overall operational effectiveness.
3. Providing leadership, direction, and support at the institution, state, and national level, with broad-reaching institutional and statewide impact
4. Acting on behalf of UFIT as needed or, in the absence of the VP and CIO, serve as the principal UFIT officer on executive decisions and executive-level committees.

Since joining UFIT in 2016, Saira has demonstrated significant leadership, leading consolidation efforts to enhance service delivery for academic, research, and administrative needs. Under her leadership, the UF Data Center upgrade was the strategic enabler to implement UF’s supercomputer HiPerGator AI. She also led UFIT’s implementation of the OneIT initiative by completing the IT rationalization efforts in voice communication, email, DNS, networking, storage, and cloud technologies. Saira’s transformational leadership style fosters a strong culture of quality, transparency, and innovation, elevating the entire organization and creating standards of excellence.

Organizational Changes Announced

VP and CIO Elias Eldayrie announced a reorganization of Enterprise Systems (ES) into two departments.

The reorganization will optimize how UFIT works, flatten reporting lines to create a more nimble management layer, and enable progress towards the 2020-2025 University of Florida’s Strategic Plan for IT. The new departments, their inaugural directors, and functional teams are:

Applications, Development, and Integrations (Nicole Garvey Jeffers)
● Systems and Programming (ERP/UX/EDM)
● Business Support & Change Management
● Student Life, Development Services, & CRM

Data Platform and Analytics (Jim Freymann)
● Master Data Management
● Integrations
● Reporting & Analytics
● Data Science & Analytics

Nicole Garvey Jeffers is the director of Applications, Development, and Integrations. Nicole has been with the university since 2005, most recently as associate director of ES. Nicole has held many leadership roles with UF’s PeopleSoft (myUFL) environment, including significant contributions to the HR and Financial upgrades. She also served as the technical lead for the COMPASS program’s implementation.

Jim Freymann is the director of Data Platform and Analytics. Jim has been with UFIT for over 15 years, most recently as associate director of data analytics. He served as the COMPASS program director, led the ES operations and change and release teams, and managed UFIT’s Project Management Office for six years. Jim also was technical lead for UF’s COVID-19 Return to Campus data and reporting initiative.

Both Nicole and Jim are now members of the CIO Senior Leadership Team and report to the VP and CIO.

Campus-Wide Message: Ransomware and Phishing

Vice President and CIO Elias Eldayrie emailed all UF faculty, students, and staff this morning with facts about ransomware and phishing. Eldayrie also listed some key success indicators for securing campus, like a decrease in compromised accounts and the increase in reporting potential phishing emails, made possible because of the campus’s buy-in and involvement on cybersecurity issues. The statistics Eldayrie shared are:

Unauthorized Account Usage
Since implementation of multi-factor authentication, UF has seen a 99.7% decrease in compromised accounts
Since installation of the phish alert button into GatorMail, faculty, students, and staff have reported more than 14,500 suspicious emails, leading to fewer successful phishing attempts
IT Security Risks
Since launching the new risk assessment process in 2016, 5,200+ risk assessments have been submitted by faculty and staff prior to technology purchase, allowing for review of security gaps and risk

UFIT engages in year-round training and outreach to help UF better understand information security risks, like what to look for before clicking on links in emails–especially those with the [External Email] banner. President Fuchs also recorded a video about ransomware and phishing to support outreach efforts. View the President’s video here.

Additional resources to help our campus community securely teach, learn, research, and conduct university business are listed on https://security.ufl.edu/resources/.

Our Purpose. Our Legacy.

On behalf of the staff of UFIT, it is with great excitement that we share the University of Florida 2020-2025 Strategic Plan for IT with Gator Nation! This five-year plan outlines how UFIT will support the university as it transforms to a national leadership role in the application of AI in higher education, including an expansive plan to elevate research, teaching, and economic development. The plan is built around six goals:

1. Enable Student Success
2. Empower the Future of Research
3. Accelerate Philanthropic Impact
4. Elevate the Stakeholder Experience
5. Advance an Analytics-Enabled Environment
6. Build a Resilient Cybersecurity Environment

We gratefully acknowledge the hundreds of faculty, students, and staff who gave their time to assist in the formation of the University of Florida 2020-2025 Strategic Plan for IT. While the plan was under development, the U.S. has been grappling with a global pandemic and addressing racial equality and social justice, important causes on campus and in our community. These issues are also addressed in the plan, with actionable items included as part of UFIT’s objectives. Anyone with questions about the plan or who would like to provide feedback is welcome to send their comments to VP and CIO Elias Eldayrie.