WMU News

Board names building for Haenicke

March 20, 1998

KALAMAZOO -- The Western Michigan University Board of Trustees has named the University's new Science Research Pavilion Diether H. Haenicke Hall, recognizing the "exceptional leadership" of the University's fifth president.

The pavilion has come to symbolize the University's commitment to research while remaining an undergraduate teaching institution of the highest quality, two goals that Haenicke has espoused since he came to WMU in 1985.

The board took its action "in honor and appreciation of President Haenicke's many contributions to the life and work of the University," it said in a resolution. Haenicke announced last summer that he would retire from the presidency July 31 after 13 years to return to the faculty.

The board March 20 also approved granting Haenicke an honorary doctor of humane letters degree at the University's June 27 commencement. In addition, it voted to give him the title of president emeritus upon his retirement as president and granted him a one-year sabbatical, after which he will return to the faculty in fall 1999 as a Distinguished University Professor.

In naming the building, the Board of Trustees cited Haenicke's commitment to fund raising, bringing WMU "millions of dollars in private funds for endowments, scholarships, facilities and other worthy endeavors." It also pointed to his "dedication to the academic enterprise" as expressed in such facilities as the Science Research Pavilion.

The pavilion, located on the west edge of the University's West Campus, is part of a $44.4 million project to provide new and renovated facilities for the sciences at WMU. It will house state-of-the-art research laboratories and equipment. The building will be completed next year.

The new science facilities, including a completely renovated Wood Hall for classrooms and offices, are expected to help put WMU on the cutting edge of research in the sciences, WMU officials said. They will help faculty members and students work together in new and innovative ways.

Media contact: Mike Matthews; michael.matthews@wmich.edu

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