Campus Community, Supporters Celebrate Opening of Alumni Center
Davidson-Gundy Alumni Center Aims to Build Closer University Connection for Students and Graduates
Alumni, students, faculty, staff and supporters recently gathered for a series of events marking the opening of the Davidson-Gundy Alumni Center, the new 30,246-square-foot facility in the heart of campus designed to deepen bonds between students and graduates.
“This center, by design, is meant to welcome alumni home and to connect them with our bright, dynamic students — our future alumni,” UT Dallas President Richard C. Benson said during the ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 7.
Alumni Center Donors
Generous gifts from alumni and friends have resulted in the naming of various spaces within the center. Those donors include:
- Nancy Gundy Davidson BS’80 and Charles “Chuck” Davidson MS’80
- Ann and Jack Graves Charitable Foundation
- Texas Instruments
- Mike Redeker MBA’97, MA’01
- The Inge Foundation
- Jane Yates BA’78
- Tracey and Steve W. Caple BA’89
- Joyce R. Johnson BGS’83
- Nicole J. Tucker BA’04
- Ellaine and Jim Parry MBA’88, MS’88
- UT Dallas Athletics Alumni
- UT Dallas Student Ambassadors Alumni
Named for Nancy Gundy Davidson BS’80 and Charles “Chuck” Davidson MS’80, in acknowledgment of their $15 million gift that made its construction possible, the center offers the University’s more than 100,000 alumni a place where they can connect with one another and the campus.
Dr. David Daniel, UT System deputy chancellor and former president of the University, also spoke at the ceremony, recalling conversations with the Davidsons in which they first imagined a UT Dallas alumni center and deliberated its site placement.
“To me, this is a deeply inspirational building and a place where people come together,” Daniel said. “So much life-changing activity will take place at this facility.”
Through their sustained support, the Davidsons, longtime supporters of the University and the Naveen Jindal School of Management, have made the creation of a number of endowed chairs and scholarships possible, and the Davidson Management Honors Program is named in their honor. Both served as members of the Realize the Vision Campaign Council, and Chuck Davidson is a member of the Development Board. Additionally, the two were recognized as School of Management Distinguished Alumni in 2002 and UT Dallas Distinguished Alumni in 2008.
“The idea of bringing an alumni center to UT Dallas was something that really resonated with Nancy and me,” Davidson said. “This beautiful building is going to serve our students, our faculty, our staff and our alumni for decades to come.”
Alumni, corporate partners and supporters who had made gifts resulting in named spaces within the center were recognized that evening during a celebratory dinner held in the center’s Ann and Jack Graves Ballroom.
“As we look forward, we hope for a great university that is supported by motivated and engaged alumni who know that they are critically important to the success of this institution,” Chuck Davidson said at the dinner. “I have already been impressed by how so many have stepped forward to support the facility.”
After the dinner, disco band Le Freak entertained dinner guests, alumni and the campus community on the spacious lawn, just outside Texas Instruments Inspiration Hall, late into the evening.
“As envisioned by the Davidsons, this center will be a gateway to the future. It will be the front door for alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends, and it will serve as an epicenter for establishing more permanent ties with one another and the University,” said Dr. Kyle Edgington PhD’13, vice president of development and alumni relations. “In essence, it will strengthen the entire Comet community.”
Almost two years after ground was broken for the Davidson-Gundy Alumni Center, construction was completed on the new home for past and future alumni. See how the center took shape in this time-lapse video. If you don't see the video, watch it on Vimeo.
Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].