Monday, May 29, 2006

UND's second largest gift ever

As you're probably aware, this past week, the UND Foundation received their second largest gift ever (right after Ralph's $100 million). The Danley Gift is valued at $10 million and is the bulk of the estate of the late Roy Danley and Elnora (Hopper) Danley. Unlike a lot of big donors, the majority of the Danley gift is not designated for a specific major building project or program. Instead, only $1 million is already programmed for several smaller projects and the remaining $9 million can be used for whatever UND deems "priority needs".

I'm pleased to see that Mrs. Danley's love affair with the natural beauty of the UND campus led her to donate money for several projects in the vicinity of the English Coulee.

The Adelphi Fountain at UND is a century old, but it has been in shameful disrepair for years. To me, it has always seemed to be such a logical symbol for the campus and I'm so happy to see a former student felt the same way. I can't wait to see what the fountain will look like after a thorough restoration project.

The Memorial Wall is a campus project that got plenty of discussion over the past school year, but there didn't really seem to be a push (or funding) to get the project going. Now, the Danley gift will be funding this wall. The wall will memorialize members of the UND community that have died while at rather prominent figure comes to my mind.

Another interesting project that the Danley gift will be funding includes a new ecumenical "Spiritual Center" near the Memorial Wall and the Adelphi Fountain. It will be used for "meditation, prayer, small worship groups, and weddings." Should be an interesting addition to campus. Its look reminds me a bit of the prairie churches that used to dot the local landscape of the Red River Valley.

Other projects that the Danley gift will be funding includes a garden at the entrance of the new Wellness Center and a "Quiet Room" in the Wellness Center. The quiet room appears to incorporate a labyrinth.

It will be great to see these projects dot the campus landscape in the next few months. It's also going to be very interesting to see what UND determines is a "priority need". Funding for a Division I move? A new indoor running track? I personally would like to see the gift spent on something other than athletics for a change. I can think of many "priority needs" around campus.


wendian said...

The majority of the remainder is endowed and will go toward student scholarships at the request of the Danleys, which is certainly a priority need. I don't believe there are any other projects at this time tagged to the money.

wendian said...

P.S. this is completely off topic, but since you seem to be the all-knowing one of official GF business, do you have any idea where one could find the infamous "Mystery Machine" van that cruises GF from time to time? Someone asked me the other day and I have no idea. I remember seeing last summer while on a bike ride, somewhere in the neighborhood of 10th St or Oak. Help me, oh wise guru!

GrandForksGuy said...

The Mystery Machine like in Scooby Doo? I might be wrong, but I'm thinking there is a radio station in Grand Forks who has a van painted up like the Mystery Machine. Can anybody else help out here? Is it a radio station and, if so, which one?

JGS said...

The ice cream truck? I don't recall a Scooby Doo type vehicle in Grand Forks. Unless it's a radio station, as gfg mentioned.

This donation is a fantastic gift. I have always been a fan of rivers being beautified. The Coulee will look great after this "face-lift" is completed.

Brooks said...

I have to admit, I dont even know where the Adelphi fountain is. On the southwest side of the coulee? thats the only area im not around much.

GrandForksGuy said...

The Adelphi Fountain is right by the coulee in the heart of campus. You know that small walking bridge that crosses the coulee and leads to Hughes Fine Arts? The fountain is near that bridge. If you stand in front of Twamley and look toward the coulee I think you should see the fountain.