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Kelce to Expand Thanks to Donor - KOAM TV 7

Kelce to Expand Thanks to Donor

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PITTSBURG, KANSAS -

The Bicknell Center for the Arts, the University House, and the Robert W Plaster Center. Just a few of the facilities at Pitt State, made possible at least in part, through private donors.

It's the same for the expansion of the Kelce College of Business. Or any future construction projects at the university.

Renovations for Kelce is still in the "programming stage". But dean of the College of Business, Paul Grimes, already has some suggestions. 

"This room would probably need to go away," Grimes said showing off a room, while outdated and overcrowded, is one of the most heavily used in the building. Grimes says the university has discussed renovating Kelce since he took the dean's position more than four years ago.

"Our big issue is functionality," Grimes said. "This building was built in the early 1950's. It was a great facility for a high school. Which it was built for."

Even after years of discussion, real planning could only begin after a $3-million gift from two alumni.

"The state of Kansas is not supporting facilities right now. Especially new facilities," said VP of University Advancement Kathleen Flannery.

She helps coordinate the university's campaigns for private funding. Like it's $55-million Capital Campaign, a Faculty and Staff Campaign, and an upcoming Community Campaign. 

One of the first things you see when you walk in the Kelce College of Business is a large poster for the Faculty and Staff Campaign. Paul Grimes is pictured in the center, smiling. He says it's becoming crucial for professors to be able to market their university to donors.

"Particularly in Kansas," Grimes said. "It's extremely important to have generous donors and constituents that support your cause."

"There's no questions that we're going to have to count more and more on outside funding," Flannery said. "And I think that's gonna be the wave of the future."

The architect for the Kelce expansion will spend the next 12-months in the "programming stage", developing a plan of action for the facility.

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