USF is racking in names for students to see after coming back from spring break. The first to speak will be Cat Cora, Iron Chef winner and entrepreneur, for the University Lecture Series (ULS) on March 20. Then for USF Week, April 2-7, Tony-award winning actor Leslie Odom Jr. will be speaking as part of ULS on April 3 with bands X Ambassadors and We the Kings coming on April 6 for Bullstock. All events are free with students, staff and faculty receiving priority.
Cat Cora – March 20, Oval Theater at 8 p.m.
Cora recently partnered with USF Dining to open a Mediterranean-based restaurant on campus called Olilo, which is in the Juniper-Poplar POD Market. She started her public career in 1999 when she co-hosted Melting Pot on the Food Network. She went on to be the first-ever female winner of Iron Chef. Additionally, Cora has published a line of cookbooks, been the first female inducted into The American Academy of Chefs Culinary Hall of Fame. She has opened 18 locations of the restaurant Cat Cora’s Kitchen and partnered with Aramark to open locations of Olilo.
Leslie Odom Jr. – April 3, Oval Theater at 8 p.m.
Odom is the Tony-winning actor and singer who stared in the musical Hamilton as Aaron Burr. He sung America the Beautiful during Super Bowl LII. Odom recently acted in Murder on the Orient Express and had an arc on Person of Interest.
X Ambassadors and We the Kings – April 6, Sun Dome parking lot at 6 p.m.
Headlining Bullstock will be X Ambassadors, a rock band from Ithaca, New York. Lead vocalist Sam Harris participated in the official Women’s March on Washington after-party and since then then the band has participated in a benefit for Planned Parenthood, donated funds from the release of its song “Hoping” to the ACKU and donated proceeds from a Mississippi show to Unity Mississippi – a LGBT organization.
We the Kings will be opening for X Ambassadors. The pop-punk band is local, originally from Bradenton. Its first album was released in 2007 and sold over 250,000 copies. The band’s second album included two Top 40 singles. It later went on tour with Canadian band Simple Plan and participated in Vans Warped Tour.
Along with We the Kings will be the student winner of the USF Battle of the Bands.