Living-Learning Center Named for Harper
The Rev. John P. Schlegel, S.J., president, Creighton University, announced at the Feb. 13 annual Founder’s Week convocation a generous financial gift to the University. The donation, from Charles M. “Mike” Harper, creates one of the largest endowments in the University’s history and will be used to support the ongoing operations of the Living-Learning Center.
The Living-Learning Center which will be named for Charles M. “Mike” Harper and his late wife, Josie Harper, is a signature anchor to Creighton University’s campus master plan and eastward expansion. Designed to be a one-stop center, it will unite academics and related services typically scattered across campus, including admissions, financial aid, health and counseling services and much more. This integration is unique among universities in the Midwest. It will also serve as a front door to the campus—offering visitors, alumni, prospective students, faculty and the Omaha community an engaging entrance to the University.
When asked why he made his gift Harper said,” “I witnessed firsthand, while serving on Creighton’s Board of Directors, the incredible job the University does in educating the entire person…forming women and men as leaders in their communities. Building on the accomplishments of the Rev. Michael G. Morrison, S. J., and others of past decades, the mantle of leadership has been passed. I greatly admire Fr. Schlegel’s and other leaders’ strategic vision expanding the campus eastward. This downtown renaissance certainly reinforces the decision made years ago to anchor ConAgra on the edge of the Missouri River. I know Josie would be proud, as I am that our names will be linked forever to Creighton and its Living-Learning Center.”
The 214,000 square foot, four-story building will be located northeast of 21st and California streets and includes:
• a multi-use auditorium;
• classrooms and seminar rooms;
• book store;
• a sports café;
• an indoor/outdoor coffee shop;
• a 7,000-square-foot exercise area and
• spaces for student clubs and organizations.
The University plans to offer the facility’s ballroom and meeting spaces to external groups.
Ground was broken for the project last fall, with the opening slated in the late summer of 2008.
The completion of the Living-Learning Center is another example of the University’s growth, reflected in the strategic plan and identified as a funding priority in the $350 Million Willing to Lead Campaign.