By Ada Zhang
Baylor announced on Wednesday a $1 million donation from alumni Steve and Penny Carlile to create the Steve and Penny Carlile Plaza on the Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation, the new complex to house the Hankamer School of Business.
Terry Maness, dean of the business school, said the plaza, which will be located on the corner of Third Street and Bagby Avenue, will be one of the major entrances into the business building.
“As people come up to the school, the plaza will represent us very well and be an inviting entrance into the facility,” Maness said.
He said the Carliles have been heavily involved with the business school in the past several years.
Both have been guest speakers in business classes and Mrs. Carlile served a term on the business school advisory board. In addition, Maness said, the Carliles have provided scholarship funds for business students.
“Steve and Penny Carlile have been remarkably faithful to Baylor University through their advocacy of our mission as an institution of Christian higher education and their generous philanthropy in support of student scholarships and capital projects,” said President Ken Starr. “They are shining lights for their alma mater in East Texas, embodying Baylor’s commitment to Christ and making a difference in the world through a wide range of business and personal activities.”
In a press release, Mr. Carlile said the $1 million donation goes towards creating one of the finest business school facilities in the nation.
“Penny and I believe that if God blesses you then you should use those blessings in a way that helps others,” Mr. Carlile said.
Three generations of Carliles have attended Baylor. Mr. Carlile’s father and Mrs. Carlile’s father both received business degrees from Baylor, and their son, Lance, graduated from Baylor.
“My father’s Baylor education was the foundation of his business career, and his business success provided the foundation of our business career,” Mr. Carlile said. “We’ve worked hard to honor that legacy.”
Public fundraising for this project was approved by the Baylor Board of Regents in February.
Baylor alumnus Paul L. Foster gave the naming gift to the university on June 4 to support the $100 million campaign to construct the 275,000 square foot facility.
The board of regents approved of construction on Oct. 18.
Maness said the Board of Regents only felt comfortable approving construction after seeing adequate funding from private resources.
“Anyone that’s contributing to the project is important to us,” Maness said. “These donations really allow us to move the project forward towards construction.”
According to the University Development website, the new complex will expand the size of the school by almost 40 percent.
The architectural design for the new business school facility “features a highly corporate and sustainable business environment, including a centerpiece atrium that will showcase some of the school’s signature classrooms, such as the Southwest Securities Financial Markets Center.”
Inside the complex will be a 350-seat auditorium and an assortment of classrooms. Construction is expected to be finished in July 2015.