A $1.1 million gift commitment from Lowell Guthrie of Bowling Green will provide scholarships and fund construction of a courtyard on the south end of campus.
The commitment will provide $300,000 in scholarships over 10 years. It continues funding for a general scholarship fund established in 1997.
The gift will also provide $800,000 over the 10-year period to fund construction of the Guthrie Plaza, an open-air courtyard and clock/bell tower embracing the Center for Instructional Technology and Communication. Construction of the plaza is scheduled to begin this spring.
The clock/bell tower will be in memory of Guthrie's brother, Sgt. 1st Class Robert Guthrie, who was killed in the Korean War, and all those associated with Western who lost their lives fighting for their country. The courtyard will also honor Lowell Guthrie's wife, Judith Caroline Guthrie.
Dr. Ransdell said, "This courtyard will not only enhance the appearance of our campus, but it will also serve as a reminder to all of us of the supreme sacrifices that have made our way of life possible."
Lowell Guthrie, president and CEO of Trace Die Cast, said that although he is not a Western alumnus, he is grateful for the resources Western has provided him and his business. He has taken an active role in supporting education by providing scholarships through the College Heights Foundation.
"Scholarships are important especially when they are the only way for someone to attend college," he said. "I also think it is important to provide students with a place where they can gather on campus for concerts, forums, etc."
The courtyard will feature a brick and stone bell/clock tower with chimes, brick paving, benches and landscaping, Dr. Ransdell said. "It is designed to be the focal point for students, faculty and the people of Bowling Green to enjoy the southern portion of our campus," he said.
Tom Hiles, WKU's vice president for Development and Alumni Relations, said, "We want to thank Lowell for his leadership gift that will have a lasting impact on the beauty of the campus and, through the scholarships, continue to keep Western accessible to students from all backgrounds."
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