Campus Renovations

Aquinas College Receives Largest Individual Donation in School’s History

Aquinas College, a private Roman Catholic college in Grand Rapids, Mich., announced this week that it has received its largest single donation ever from an individual, living donor. The $3-million gift from Peter and Carolyn Sturrus of Grand Haven, Mich., comes in support of the college’s new Gold LEED-certified Albertus Magnus Hall of Science. A college news release states that they were drawn to support the project by the opportunity to simultaneously support both science- and faith-based education.

The 15-year expansion of Albertus Magnus Hall added space for programs like biochemistry, molecular biology, data analytics, environmental studies, health science and geospatial technologies. The atrium bridging the renovated parts of the facility and the new addition will be called the Peter and Carolyn Sturrus Atrium.

“Albertus Magnus taught that religion and science are not mutually exclusive. That idea drew us to want to support this space for students in a significant way,” said Peter Sturrus. “Carolyn and I want to see more students have access to a solid, faith-based education. We also believe that our world will continue to be better as we make advances in science and technology. This project brought it together for us.”

The facility’s LEED-Gold certification was earned through a variety of sustainable features, most notably a green roof that can be used as an outdoor classroom space. Others include use of local materials; reusing and repurposing more than three-quarters of the existing building’s structure; upgraded ventilation systems; access to natural light; and low-flush and automatic faucets.

Other new and upgraded features of Albertus Magnus Hall include 15 teaching laboratories, including a nursing simulation and observation space; six dedicated research laboratories; 11 classrooms, 26 offices and eight study and collaborative spaces; and the new home of the Center for Sustainability.

“We are deeply honored and humbled by Peter and Carolyn’s extreme generosity,” said Aquinas President Kevin G. Quinn. “At Aquinas, we believe in the development of the whole person, which resonates with Peter and Carolyn. The new science facility is transforming the way we serve our students. It is a point of pride for all Saints and a symbol of the future of Aquinas College.”

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].