Baylor Announces Lead Gift For Paul L. Foster Success Center

Feb. 6, 2006

Contact Cindy Dougherty, University Development, (254) 710-2561

Helping students utilize their God-given strengths to realize their goals is a priority at Baylor University and one that recently received tremendous support through Paul Foster's $3-million gift to the Success Center. The Paul L. Foster Success Center will house six departments devoted to developing Baylor students to their full potential: Academic Advisement, Academic Support Services, Career Counseling, Career Services, Office of Access and Learning Accommodation (OALA) and Student-Athlete Services.

"The Success Center seemed appropriate to me because I was a student who showed up at Baylor many years ago alone and somewhat confused," said Foster of El Paso, Texas. "A tool such as the Success Center would most definitely have helped me, not only upon my arrival, but also throughout my stay at Baylor, including my job search process as I approached graduation."

"The Success Center will make a greater difference in the lives of more students than any single project that the university has done in Baylor history," said Dr. Richard C. Scott, vice president for university development.

Programs within the Success Center utilize students' strengths, enhance their academic development, position them to attain their academic and professional goals and help them view life as a Christian stewardship.

"Each unit within the Success Center intentionally provides services and programs that support student success as well as engage them in the learning process," said Brandon Miller, assistant vice president of the Success Center. "The ultimate goal of the Paul L. Foster Success Center is to ensure that Baylor students succeed academically, complete their degree programs and then utilize the resources available to emerge as global leaders. Mr. Foster's gift will directly support Baylor 2012 and will help Baylor achieve its goal of being recognized as a top-tier university committed to Christ."

The central philosophy of the Success Center focuses on students' strengths rather than weaknesses and leverages each student's unique gifts, encouraging all to reach their fullest potential.

Currently, Success Center services are scattered in various locations across campus, making it difficult for students to access these services readily. The Paul L. Foster Success Center will unite the six academic departments under one roof -- the Sid Richardson Building, prominently located on the central axis of campus. This new centralized location will provide convenient access for all students.

"Through the renovation of this facility, Baylor is positioning students to achieve success in their academic and professional lives," said Cindy Dougherty, Success Center Campaign coordinator. "However, renovation work cannot begin until all commitments are secured. Further support for the fundraising campaign is vital in completing this facility and bringing these services together under one roof."

Naming opportunities within the center are available for anyone who would like to be a part of this program. For more information on how you can help Baylor students realize their dreams, contact Cindy Dougherty, Baylor University Development, (254) 710-2561 or 1-800-BAYLOR-U, option 4.

Paul Foster received his bachelor's degree in business administration from Baylor in 1979. He is president and CEO of Western Refining Co., a company he formed in 1997. Western Refining Co. is currently the single refining operation located in the heart of El Paso and is one of the largest suppliers of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel to the Phoenix, Tucson, Albuquerque and El Paso markets. Foster is a CPA and is a member of many professional organizations, including the American Institute of CPAs and the National Petroleum Refiners' Association. He serves as chairman of the board for the El Paso American Red Cross and serves on the boards of the Sun Bowl Association and Bank of the West.

"I firmly believe that the opportunities afforded to me throughout my career are very much a result of my educational and social experiences at Baylor," Foster said. "I am hopeful that the Success Center will provide a means for students to transition into, through and out of Baylor with the maximum level of assistance and advice possible."

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