Oct 4, 2007    #147
Contact: Heather Haas
(816) 235-5705

Miller Nichols Library receives $5 million gift for expansion

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) Miller Nichols Library and Interactive Learning Center is the beneficiary of a combined $5 million gift from The Miller Nichols Charitable Foundation and The Miller and Jeannette Nichols Foundation. The major commitment completes the private funding portion of Phase I for the project and enables “Your UMKC: The Campaign for Kansas City’s University” to not only meet, but exceed its $200 million goal.Today, at the dedication of another campaign project, the Health Sciences Building, co-chairs and alumni Terry and Peggy Dunn announced that the campaign raised $203 million to recruit students, attract faculty members, enhance and construct facilities and achieve excellence in key programs.

The university’s first, nine-figure comprehensive fundraising initiative began counting dollars on July 1, 2000. The 226,343 gifts and pledges committed by nearly 50,000 donors enabled “Your UMKC” to deliver results. In addition to funding Phase I of the Miller Nichols Library expansion, the campaign:

Provided more than $36 million in financial support via scholarships, stipends and fellowships raised across each academic unit;

Created innovative programs such as the Institute for Urban Education and the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation;

Established of 10 endowed chair positions to strengthen key programs in the Bloch School, the Conservatory of Music and Dance, the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Medicine; and

Funded Oak Street Residence Hall, the Law School’s Courtroom/Classroom project, the Marion H. Bloch Terrace and Park, and the Health Sciences Building on Hospital Hill, which serves as the new home for the Schools of Pharmacy and Nursing.

“The Nichols Foundations’ extraordinary investment in the academic heart of campus is a fitting way for the ‘Your UMKC’ campaign to conclude,” said John Amato, vice chancellor for University Advancement. “The campaign provided a solid foundation from which UMKC can address growing campus and community needs.”

The Miller Nichols Library and Interactive Learning Center is the university’s current highest capital private funding priority. The project, which will be completed in three phases, calls for the renovation of approximately 170,000 renovated square feet and the addition of 65,000 square feet of library, classroom, technology and academic support spaces for the campus.

When it opened in 1969, the library was designed to serve a student population of 6,000. Today it is called on to assist more than 14,000 students and thousands more community patrons. Completion of the project will help the library meet the needs of UMKC’s current student population and accommodate a 20 percent increase in enrollment without the addition of classrooms elsewhere on UMKC’s campus.

“Plans for this exciting project allow for several decades of growth, and enable us to accommodate a wide range of academic needs and learning styles from individual research, to small group study sessions, to classes and lectures” said Dr. Sharon Bostick, dean of University Libraries. “The significant commitment by The Miller Nichols Charitable Foundation and The Miller and Jeannette Nichols Foundation for this initiative continues the late Miller Nichols’ legacy of service to the Kansas City community.”

Facility highlights include a 300-seat lecture hall, a new parking area, space to accommodate both the UMKC Writing Center and the Center for Academic Development, an automated high-density storage and retrieval system, resources to allow for sustained growth, and new, expanded facilities for the Kenneth J. LaBudde Special Collections Department and the Marr Sound Archives. Space also will be available for the Western Historical Manuscript Collection. Total costs for the project are estimated at $70 million. Twenty million dollars must be secured in private funding which will leverage $50 million in funds contributed by UMKC.

“Strong universities need strong components,” said Kay Callison, daughter of Miller Nichols, a trustee of The Miller Nichols Charitable Foundation and a director for The Miller and Jeannette Nichols Foundation. “The Miller Nichols Library is a critical part of the University’s resources. This expansion will benefit the community as a whole.”

Another campaign project that stands to greatly impact Kansas City is the UMKC Health Sciences Building on Hospital Hill. This $50.2 million facility is the new home for the Schools of Nursing and Pharmacy. The five-story structure provides 200,000 gross square feet of instructional, research and administrative space. Highlights of the building include state-of-the-art classrooms, simulation labs, a large lecture hall and a drug information center. The space afforded by the building enables UMKC to increase its enrollment growth in the health sciences, thereby heightening its ability to address Missouri’s and the nation’s – critical shortage in health care workers. Gov. Matt Blunt and other dignitaries helped celebrate the dedication of the Health Sciences Building this afternoon.

UMKC, one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 14,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a three-part mission: visual and performing arts, health and life sciences, and urban engagement.


This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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