Pittsburg State University - Pittsburg, Kansas
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News and information from Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

PSU receives $10 million gift for fine and performing arts center

PSU President Tom Bryant announces a $10 million gift for the construction of a fine and performing arts center.

A single $10 million gift will move a longstanding plan for a fine and performing arts center at Pittsburg State University a step closer to becoming a reality.

PSU officials announced the gift, from an anonymous donor, at a news conference today. It is the largest single gift in the university’s history.

“A fine and performing arts building is an important part of the university’s master plan and a big piece of the current $120 million capital campaign,” Tom Bryant, president of Pittsburg State University. “We are extremely grateful to this generous donor for this lead gift toward this project.”

Dr. Brad Hodson, vice president for university advancement said the university needs and values gifts of all sizes, but some projects require one or more large donations in order to become reality.

“The total cost of this project could exceed $30 million,” Hodson said. “That’s a high hurdle to clear with small gifts alone. Large single gifts not only move a project along more quickly, they also inspire others to join in a very worthwhile project.”

Bryant praised the donor’s vision and generosity.

“Big dreams depend on people with vision,” Bryant said. “This donor has chosen to invest not only in Pittsburg State University and many generations of students still to come, but also in the cultural life of the community.”

Gene Bicknell, honorary national chairman of the university’s $120 million capital campaign, said the fine and performing arts center the biggest remaining project in the 10-year campaign.

“We were successful in phase one in raising more than $25 million for scholarships, faculty endowments and international programs,” Bicknell said. "The second phase of the campaign has gone equally well. With today’s announcement, we have raised $95 million toward our $120 million goal. The Kansas Polymer Research Center was completed last year and the student recreation center/armory has just been completed. This fall, the university will break ground on a new student health center. Now our focus is on the fine and performing arts center and a new building for the College of Business. Bit by bit, this campaign is shaping the future of the university.”

When constructed, the fine and performing arts building will fill a campus need that has existed since old Carney Hall was razed nearly 30 years ago. Carney Hall was named for Thomas Carney, the second governor of Kansas under whom the state’s system of higher education was established. The building, constructed in 1919, included a 3,000-seat auditorium that was the cultural hub of the university. It was the site of numerous concerts and lectures until the building was razed in1980 because of concerns about the building’s structural integrity as a result of settling of the building’s foundation.

To contribute to the fine and performing arts center project or to learn more, contact the Office of Development at 620-235-4768.

---Pitt State---