By | October 29, 2010 12:00 am

The UCF College of Medicine’s medical education building now has chimes ringing on the hour. (And a warning: the carillon is timed via GPS to the rest of the clocks on campus, so you can’t claim the bells made you late to your 8 a.m. class or meeting.)

The chimes come from a computer and amplifier installed in the Clock Tower and the computer is programmed to play 1,000 different songs, from Christmas tunes like “Jingle Bells,” to Beatles hits.

“I personally like ‘Let it Snow’ for our medical school in Central Florida,” joked Ron Knappenberger, assistant director of educational technology, whose team installed the carillon.

The Ed Tech team had to create an infrastructure in the bell tower to hang the carillon equipment and link it to existing power and computer sources. That required a lot of work in the fourth floor ceiling and on the roof. “Any time you’re crawling around the ceiling, you get white,” Ron said. “And we were a mess. But standing on the roof of the building was very cool. You get a beautiful view of Lake Nona, a whole new panorama.”

The chimes were installed in time for the College of Medicine’s Opening Celebration October 16. That night, as Dr. Deborah German, vice president for medical affairs and dean of the college, welcomed more than 1,100 guests, she talked about how soon the medical school would experience its first graduation. When she said those exact words, Ron immediately pressed the “play” button for song 331: “Pomp and Circumstance.”

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