andy hopsonThe University of Florida has registered Chicago agency PR vet Andy Hopson to start up a strategic communication agency as part of its College of Journalism and Communications.

Hopson is slated to join the Gainsville-based university in mid-July as executive director of the to-be-named agency, which will be staffed by students and managed by industry pros.

Dean Diane McFarlin said the college is looking to develop a new opportunity for advertising and PR students "to build expertise in a hands-on environment."

Hopson, who has recently run Chicago ad/PR agency Noble and his own shop, Real Good Idea, sports Ruder Finn, Burson-Marsteller, Publicis and Ogilvy on his CV.

He was Chicago managing director for RF, CEO/president of the Northeast region for B-M, and president/COO of Publicis Dialog, among other agency assignments through the 1980s and '90s.