Prestigious FIU Alumni honored at Honors College Medallion Award Ceremony

David Melendez Spotlight

On Tuesday, May 16th, the FIU Honors College recognized Tina Vidal-Duart and Carlos Duart for their contributions to FIU and the FIU Honors College at the Honors College Medallion Award Ceremony that took place at the Penthouse at Riverside Wharf.

In 2015, Tina donated a planned gift of $220,000 to the Honors College. Vidal-Duart graduated from the Honors College magna cum laude in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in international business and marketing. She subsequently earned a Master of International Business degree at FIU. Tina credits the Honors College with developing her communication skills with people around the world with different cultures, interests, and ideas. Through this knowledge, her entrepreneurial spirit was born.

In 2022 Tina and Carlos made a $1.2 million gift to the FIU Honors College to establish two student scholarship endowments. It is the largest gift the Honors College has received from its alumni to date. The Vidal-Duart Scholarship Endowment supports the Honors College’s general student population, and the Vidal-Duart First Generation Scholarship Endowment supports the college’s Pell Grant-eligible students among the first generation in their families to attend college.

Tina and Carlos have long served Florida International University in various capacities. Duart was appointed to FIU’s Board of Trustees by Governor Ron DeSantis and previously served on the FIU Foundation Board of Directors and advisory councils in the College of Engineering & Computing, College of Business, and the Honors College. He is the recipient of FIU’s Torch Award and the College of Business Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame. Vidal-Duart is a recipient of the FIU Alumni Association Torch Award for Distinguished Alumni and a member of the FIU Foundation Board of Directors. She previously served on the Honors College advisory board as a member and as Chair for three years, and on the FIU President’s Council.

Florida International University President Dr. Kenneth Jessell and Provost Elizabeth Bejar were in attendance. Each spoke and extended their heartfelt appreciation to Tina and Carlos for their remarkable contributions and commitment to FIU and the Honors College. “Tina and Carlos represent FIU everywhere they go, supporting our mission as an institution, telling our story, and showing off their panther pride!” said President Jessell.

Honors College Dean, Dr. Juan Carlos Espinosa would like to thank FIU alumnus Alex Mantecon for providing the beautiful Penthouse at Riverside Wharf location for this event and all attendees for making the Honors Medallion Ceremony an unforgettable experience.