Faculty and staff change lives with Family Campaign


BOWLING GREEN, O.—The Departments of Capital Planning and Design and Construction see the results of their donations through the Family Campaign, the campus-wide effort to encourage faculty, staff and retirees to invest in Bowling Green State University.

Maybe that’s why the staff members have celebrated their full participation in the annual philanthropic effort for more than a decade, and are among the 16 departments and divisions on campus to celebrate 100-percent participation this year.

“We’ve accomplished a lot because of the students,” said Jim McArthur, lead architect for BGSU.

As part of the Family Campaign, $824,694 was given by faculty, staff and retirees to benefit a wide variety of programs and areas, including scholarships, travel grants, faculty support and student organizations. Among current faculty and staff, 50.38 percent participated to give a total of $388,969. In addition, 395 retirees together donated $435,725, demonstrating their ongoing dedication to the University and its mission of serving students.

Other units with 100 percent participation include: Accounting and MIS, Career Center, Institute for the Study of Culture and Society, New Student Orientation and First Year programs, Office of the President, Student Academic Services (College of Education and Human Development), Student Employment, Student Financial Aid, Student Health Services, Student Publications, Office of Technology Transfer, President's Leadership Academy, University Advancement and the Women's Center.

With the growth of their combined fundraising effort through Family Campaign, staff members in the Departments of Capital Planning and Design and Construction use their philanthropic dollars to celebrate and recognize their student interns and co-ops in architecture and construction management. It could mean a lunch to recognize a graduate student’s unique contribution to a major project, an office party to celebrate an upcoming graduation, or funding student travel to accompany staff to a professional conference.

“If you work in different places, you realize they all have traditions. But this is a pretty unique one,” said Steve Krakoff, associate vice president for capital planning and campus operations. “This is an interesting tradition of a tight-knit group.”

There have been plenty of opportunities to celebrate, as the staff and students recently managed the most extensive building project in the 100-year history of the university. The build included the Stroh Center, the Wolfe Center for the Arts, Centennial Residence Hall, Falcon Heights Residence Hall, Carillon Place and The Oaks dining centers.

Students were integral in the recent projects, especially in maintaining and updating an extensive data hub that includes three-dimensional imaging and GPS coordinate readings of all structures above and below ground on campus. The data hub is an important tool for contracted architecture and construction firms and requires extensive labor to keep up-to-date.

While other universities may dedicate full-time staff for such a project, students are the key to the creation and maintenance of the data hub at BGSU. And it is those sorts of hands-on experiences that allow BGSU students in architecture and construction management to earn positions at top firms and sometimes return to campus as contractors themselves, said Krakoff.

“You see them go, and I get a little sentimental about it,” Krakoff said. “And that’s why you do the things you do (for students.)”

Now, the team is planning for the next decade. Several major capital projects, including plans for a new Greek housing neighborhood and additional student housing, will likely exceed the recent record-breaking build.

“Essentially, we’ve always been a fairly tight group,” said Bob Waddle, assistant vice president for capital planning, of both departments. “It would be nice to have the entire (campus staff) find ways to support the University overall.”

 

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(Posted September 24, 2012 )