Building to New Heights
investing in the boston college campus
The Boston College campus provides the physical foundation of the University's distinctive mission to educate the whole person. More than mere bricks and mortar, each new project invigorates the BC community with a renewed sense of purpose.
State-of-the-art campus buildings, like the nearly completed Stokes Hall, help BC attract and retain the best faculty, create physical spaces that promote collaboration between undergraduates and professors, and allow students to reach their potential inside and outside the classroom.
Opening for classes in January 2013, Stokes embodies the University's long-standing commitment to the liberal arts—and will house 36 new classrooms, five academic departments, and several key student program offices.
The 183,000-square-foot humanities center will become the University's signature building for the 21st century and has inspired many throughout the BC community to leave their mark on this historic project.
Featured are two Boston College families who have answered the Light the World campaign's call to build a promising future.
Leading by Example
Jean and John Gerson, P'14
Jaclyn Gerson '14 is thriving at Boston College. An economics major with a minor in Spanish, as well as a club lacrosse player and project manager for the Club Sports Council, Gerson is spending this semester in Madrid and just completed an internship at fashion house DKNY in New York. "When your child is having a great experience, you pay attention," says her father, John Gerson.
He and his wife, Jean, wanted to both celebrate and deepen Jaclyn's connection to BC. Therefore, they recently made a campaign gift that will be recognized with the naming of a faculty office in Stokes Hall, the new humanities building to be completed on Middle Campus later this fall. With this commitment, they will leave a permanent legacy at BC and play a role in transforming the Heights.
"We wanted to support something unique, timely, and important to BC, and Stokes Hall is all those things," explains John Gerson, senior managing director and CFO of Paladin Realty Partners, LLC.
The Gersons hope to set an example for Jaclyn of the Ignatian ideal of service in action. "Giving to BC is an expression of the values we have tried to pass on. We wanted to demonstrate a meaningful way of giving back to a place that has great value in her life and where a gift can have great value to others," continues Gerson. In addition to their Stokes Hall commitment, the couple have also generously supported the Lowell Humanities Series through a lecture fund established with a gift to the Institute for the Liberal Arts.
“Jaclyn is blossoming at BC because so many of her interests are nurtured here. We see the role that an excellent liberal arts education is playing in helping her grow into a truly well-rounded young woman,” he says. “It’s very satisfying to know that we can help other young men and women benefit in a similar way.”
Enhancing the Student Experience
Janet and David T. Griffith '68, P'00, '02, '06
New Hartford, N.Y.
David T. Griffith and his family have a long and meaningful association with Boston College. A 1968 graduate of the Carroll School of Management and parent of three Eagles, Griffith has been an active and effective BC volunteer, currently serving as the legacy gifts chair of the Light the World campaign. For his dedication to Jesuit higher education, he received the University's John J. Griffin, Sr., '35, H'72, Alumni Association Award in 2011.
Griffith and his wife, Janet, are particularly excited by the promise of BC's current capital campaign. "I expect that Light the World will propel BC to an even higher degree of academic excellence. The campus-wide Master Plan is transforming the Heights and, by growing BC's endowment, we will increase our ability to maintain need-blind admission. Those are crucial objectives," says David Griffith, who is also president and CEO of M. Griffith Investment Services, Inc.
So when the Griffiths first saw sketches of Stokes Hall, the couple realized how they could expand their impact at BC. This coming spring, undergraduates will take humanities courses in a state-of-the-art, 40-student classroom named for the Griffith family.
For Janet Griffith, a retired teacher, the educational environment that Stokes will provide is inspirational. "The design of Stokes Hall will foster incredible interactions between students and faculty, and the classroom technology will be impressive," she says. "Everything about Stokes has blown us away. It's a beautiful building and will be a fantastic addition to BC’s Collegiate Gothic campus."
Through their campaign gift in support of Stokes Hall, the Griffith family has made tangible its profound connection to Boston College and will touch students' lives—both today and tomorrow.