The Harvard administration has secured a donor for a campus center and will soon begin planning for its development, University President Drew G. Faust told The Crimson earlier this week.
She declined to identify the donor, citing that person’s wishes, but said that the name would be revealed in an announcement later this fall. “It’s going to happen, but we will tell you the specifics when we get all the ‘t’s crossed and ‘i’s dotted for the announcement,” Faust said.
Faust also declined to reveal the gift’s size, again citing the donor’s wishes, and said that it will likely never be revealed publicly.
“But it will make the project doable,” she added. “So we’re very excited.”
The donation comes as part of The Harvard Campaign, a nearly decade-long, University-wide fundraising drive whose public phase will officially launch next Saturday. Faust told The Crimson nearly one year ago that the center would be a priority for the campaign. She also said at the time that it would likely be built in Holyoke Center and contain a variety of spaces designed for everything from parties to lectures and studying.
Faust said that administrators are beginning to organize a planning and consultation process for the center that will incorporate input from students, House Masters, and faculty members.
The Undergraduate Council has long been calling for a student center along the lines of those that exist at other universities, and in 2011, the UC presented a report to Faust asking for a student center specifically for undergraduates. Faust, however, has repeatedly called it a “campus center” that will cater to the entire University.
UC President Tara Raghuveer ’14 described the announcement as “very exciting for us as an institution,” though she noted that she had been unaware of the donation before being approached by The Crimson.
Raghuveer also emphasized the importance of engaging students in decisions about the center. “I’m glad to hear that [Faust] has a sustained commitment to keeping students involved in the process,” she said.
—Staff writer Samuel Y. Weinstock can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @syweinstock.