BU Regents Approve Fund-Raising for Student Life Center

Sept. 14, 1995

WACO, Texas -- The Baylor University Board of Regents today approved revised plans for the construction of a $20 million student life complex -- considered the highest-priority construction project on the University's master plan.

The regents authorized Baylor administrators to seek the funds needed for the project, but the action does not obligate the University to proceed with plans until the funding is in place and further refinement of the proposal is completed.

The proposed complex would include a 100,000-square-foot physical fitness center including a weight room, three regulation-size basketball courts, an indoor track, 10 racquetball courts, an aerobics room, exercise room, dressing rooms, a snack bar, a student lounge, and offices for intramural and wellness programs.

The facility also would include a natatorium, providing a 50-meter pool that meets NCAA regulations, and seating for 200 spectators. The complex also would include:

-- Intramural fields, to include seven flag football fields, six softball fields, a .75-mile outdoor jogging track, and a regulation soccer field -- all lighted and irrigated;

-- a student health and wellness center, providing facilities for all student health services;

-- a marina pool building that includes dressing rooms, a student lounge, snack bar and offices;

-- a tennis center with eight new lighted courts, a clubhouse with dressing rooms and offices, a grandstand and pro shop;

-- and an enhancement of the soccer field to include fencing and stands.

In other business, the regents:

-- Set Oct. 27 during the Baylor Homecoming activities to dedicate the Clifton Robinson Tower, the newest Baylor facility at the corner of University Parks Drive and Interstate 35.

-- Approved the recommendation to name the foyer of the Clifton Robinson Tower the "Dial and Betty Black Memorial Foyer." William Dial Black and his wife, Betty, both now deceased, were active Baylor supporters from the Houston area. Dial Black was a banker whose other business ventures included agriculture, livestock, land development and oil. He was a founder of Houston Baptist University and also served on the Baylor Development Council.

Black's sister, Sadie Jo Black, is a retired Baylor faculty member who taught in the Department of Family and Consumer Services.

-- Approved the appointment of Dr. James L. "Jimmy" Williamson as chairman of the Department of Educational Administration in the Baylor School of Education. Williamson has been serving as acting chairman of that department.

-- Adopted a resolution honoring Dr. Cornelia Marschall Smith on her 100th birthday on Oct. 15. Smith graduated from Baylor in 1918 with a degree in biology and later began her teaching career at Baylor in 1928 as an instructor in botany. She ended her career in that department in 1967, retiring as chairman of that department. She is the recipient of Baylor's Distinguished Alumna Award (1972), a citation for her devotion to duty by the State Board of Medical Examiners (1967), and the Minnie Piper Professor of the Year award (1966), among other honors.

-- Approved a resolution of appreciation for the Baylor Student Foundation, an organization of students who assist the University with public relations, recruitment and fund-raising efforts. Since 1969, the Student Foundation has awarded more than $1.8 million in scholarships to 3,356 students and has established an endowed scholarship fund of almost $800,000.

-- Heard a report that more than 9,000 bricks have been purchased for the Sesquicentennial Walkway project, raising almost $1.4 million for the Sesquicentennial Campaign.

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