‘Friend of Adrian College’ commits final $1.4 million needed to build art gallery on campus

There are more than 400 donors who care so much about the arts and Adrian College they have reached into their pockets and pulled out what they can to help fund a beautiful new art gallery at Adrian College and renovate the art building. One donor, in particular, stands out among the others, however, prefers to remain anonymous and referred to simply as, “a friend of Adrian College.” A goal of $3.5 million was recently reached with the “friend” committing to fund the final $1.4 million needed to see the project plans put in motion.

“We are very grateful for this amazing gift that a dear friend of the College gave to finish this project, as well as all of the 400-plus donors who’ve already made commitments to Mahan Hall and our visual arts programs,” Adrian College Vice President for Development Jim Mahony said. “This impact will be felt for generations of Adrian College students.”

Mahan Hall, built in 1965, is the final academic facility on Adrian College’s campus to be artistically and functionally renovated as part of President Jeffrey Docking’s Renaissance II Campaign, which brought major upgrades to Spencer Hall (music), Jones Hall (business, economics, history), Peelle Hall (science) and many other buildings. Mahan Hall houses Adrian College’s fine arts, visual arts, interior design, graphic design, art education, art therapy and photography programs, as well as the esteemed Adrian Symphony Orchestra.

“The renovation of Mahan Hall will provide our students, faculty, staff, and the community at large with a state-of-the-art facility to learn, develop, create, and showcase their art,” Vice President and Dean of Academic Affairs Andrea Milner said. “Our students’ educational experiences will be exceptionally enhanced by the sophisticated learning environment that the renovation will provide. We are so grateful to each and every donor for their generosity.”

Similar to the other Renaissance II Campaign facility renovations, which started in 2010, all of the funding needed for the Mahan Hall Art Gallery project had to be raised before any renovations could begin. Now that the entire amount needed has been committed to renovating Mahan Hall, work could potentially begin as early as next summer. The first step will be working to create updated architectural renderings of the facility by getting input from faculty currently using the facility.

“Because we have all of the money committed, we are now able to start putting the wheels in motion,” Mahony said. “We’ve started talking to a general contractor about timelines and building dates. We know how much money will be coming in over the next number of years. We are as close as we’ve ever been to seeing this project completed.”

Adrian College’s Office of Development turned its focus back to completing the final Renaissance II Campaign project after having more than $14 million committed during the last four years to scholarships through the Impact Campaign.

The priority in the Mahan Hall project is to create a professional art gallery for students and alumni to display their creations. Currently, students transport their artwork from Mahan Hall to Shipman Library for showings in limited space. The new art gallery in Mahan Hall will also be used to host personal and fine art collections from alumni, work by top artists from around the world, and inspiring art camps for community children.

“The renovations will make Mahan Hall a sophisticated space to host future receptions for fine, visual, and performing arts productions,” Mahony said. “Adrian College hopes the new Mahan Hall Art Gallery will make a significant impact on the community by building upon and enhancing the cultural lives of the students, faculty, staff, and Lenawee County community members and friends.”

For more information on this and other Adrian College development projects, email Mahony at jmahony@adrian.edu or call 264.3104.