Community Relations

Signature Community Events

USF St. Petersburg has hosted the annual Tampa Bay Times Festival of Reading since 2005. Usually held in the Fall, the festival has presented an eclectic array of topics and authors such as: Carl Hiaasen, Dennis Lehane, R.L. Stine, Sen. Bob Graham, Andy Borowitz, Michael Connelly, Arianna Huffington, Taylor Branch, Candace Bushnell, Doris Kearns Goodwin, and Martina Navratilova.

St. Petersburg Science Festival is an annual regional celebration every fall where families and the public can explore the wonders of hands-on science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM). The event is held in conjunction with MarineQuest, the annual open house of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute. 

Poetry Out Loud Florida is organized by USF St. Petersburg and the state competition is hosted on the campus each year in March.  Poetry Out Loud is a national poetry recitation competition that provides high school students an opportunity to read and recite great poems while enhancing their public speaking and presentation skills. It is implemented in approximately 60 Florida high schools and impacts 9,000- 11,000 students each year by bringing a unit of poetry into the classroom and a school-wide competition where each school’s winner is invited to compete at the state competition.

St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs (SPCWA) brings together diplomats, military, media, scientists and experts in many fields to work collaboratively at better understanding and operating in the world to campus annually in February. It was founded in 2013, by former U.S. Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Douglas McElhaney and Professor Thomas Smith.

The inaugural St. Petersburg Race Equity Conference will be hosted on campus in collaboration with the City and the Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg on March 15, 2022. The intention is for this to be an annual event that marks our progress toward making St. Petersburg city and region the most equitable city in America.