By Rochelle Broder-Singer | 09/25/17
Hurricane pride runs deep in the Milton family. Three brothers, one of the brother’s wives and two of their sons are all UM graduates – and all attribute their career successes to their UM educations. Husband and wife Cecil J. Milton (BBA ’92) and Ana VeigaMilton (BSEE ’87, JD ’93) believe so strongly in the University and the College of Engineering that, in 2012, they made a major gift to the College.
“How fortunate we are in Miami to boast a world-class research university in our backyard, under the sunlight and near the sea,” said Ana, who attended the College on an Isaac Bashevis Singer full scholarship, then returned to the University for law school, also on a full merit scholarship. Son Eric (BSCpE ’17) also was a recipient of the Isaac Bashevis Singer full scholarship. “That Eric would choose to study Engineering at UM after being awarded the same scholarship I earned was a special treat for me,” Ana added. “I vicariously experienced undergrad all over again – but this time it was much more intense and in-depth, with the highest caliber of professors, peers, and technology. I had an amazing education at UM, and I can be proud that Eric received an even better one!”
Ana and Cecil’s son Alec (BBA ’15, MREDU ’17) followed in the footsteps of his father – both attended the School of Business, with Cecil majoring in finance and Alec majoring in entrepreneurship and earning a master’s in real estate development and urban planning. “Alec’s early commitment to step into our residential real estate management business drove him to follow in my footsteps and study business at UM,” Cecil said. “He is third generation and wanted to focus his educational experience on adding value to an already successful business model.” The couple’s daughter, Diana, is studying at Georgia Tech and has already expressed interest in graduate work or law school at the University.
Cecil and Ana’s gift opened the door to further generosity from the Milton family. In 2015, the José Milton Foundation made a generous gift to the College, establishing the José Milton Leadership Hall. It is a fitting tribute to family patriarch José, who immigrated to Miami from Cuba with a dream, a keen mind for business and a degree in architecture from Universidad de La Habana. He founded United Property Management, expanding his real-estate holdings and growing his company into one of South Florida’s largest privately held management firms, with a portfolio of more than 8,000 apartment units. The company continues to strive to provide South Florida’s growing population with affordable luxury housing and unparalleled customer service.
“My father espoused the value of education, which is one reason he left us with the José Milton Foundation,” Cecil said. “It was his wish that his legacy support organizations in South Florida that improve quality of living, with a special focus on education, research and access to quality health care. My family’s and the foundation’s gifts to the College of Engineering will do just that. It’s an honor to participate in the incredible growth and success of the ‘U’ and the College of Engineering.”