Springfield, Ohio – The names Hirt, Hagen and McWilliams are synonymous with philanthropy at Wittenberg and in advancing the University's mission. The families' generous support has funded scholarships, the Susan Hirt Hagen Center for Civic & Urban Engagement, an endowed chair in history, and now, thanks to Thomas B. Hagen and Sarah Hagen McWilliams, a $10 million gift to renovate Koch Hall, home of Wittenberg's visual arts programs and a treasured facility for Hagen McWilliams, a 1988 graduate and member of the university's Board of Directors.
"We are extremely grateful to Sarah Hagen McWilliams and Tom Hagen for their extraordinary generosity, and their commitment to changing lives and advancing the visual arts at Wittenberg," said President Michael L. Frandsen, Ph.D. "Through their gift, more students, majors, and others will develop into creative, engaged learners in the visual arts in an iconic campus building re-designed and updated to serve generations to come."
The $10 million gift will be used to renovate Koch Hall's classrooms to provide more welcoming, contemporary, and inspiring locations for student learning and creative expression. The gift will also update Koch's internal systems, including mechanical, electrical and HVAC. Planning is underway with a start date to be determined.
“This significant $10 million gift will revitalize a historic and iconic building on our campus,” said Wendy Kobler, vice president for advancement. “The McWilliams and Hagen families have a vision to expand the reach and raise the profile of our visual arts programs, and we are very grateful that they have thought big and stretched to support our strategic plan and bold ambitions.”
The news was announced during a special campus-wide reception hosted by Wittenberg's Board of Directors, May 3, which included brief remarks by Alejandra Gimenez-Berger, associate professor of art and department chair.