Albany – The State University of New York Board of Trustees
today approved the naming of the new Applied Design Center at Morrisville State
College in honor of Dr. Sheila Johnson, co founder of Black Entertainment
Television and a noted philanthropist, entrepreneur, musician and educator.
Johnson has donated more than $2 million to the college to fund scholarships,
academic enrichment and cultural activities, and establish leadership programs
for under-represented and economically disadvantaged students,” said SUNY
Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “This naming recognizes her generosity and
positive impact on Morrisville and the lives of so many students."
“As a direct result of Dr.
Johnson’s generosity, SUNY Morrisville students have state-of-the-art
facilities and modern equipment available to enhance their education,” said
Board Chairman Carl T. Hayden.” At the same time, thanks to her support the
college will be able to attract and retain faculty that are the best of the
best,” said Board Chairman Carl T. Hayden. “It is an honor and a pleasure to support
this most recent naming in Dr. Johnson’s honor.”
Morrisville State College
President Raymond W. Cross said, “Sheila
Johnson is a difference maker. Her generosity has directly impacted our
students and the campus in general. We are honored that she recognizes
the value of the Morrisville educational experience and has chosen to support
our institution. The naming of the college's new Applied Design Center is a most fitting honor for a woman of high character whose philanthropy
continues to influence the college and its students.”
Ms. Johnson is the most
generous individual benefactor in the college’s history, having contributed
more than $2 million since 2002.
Her pledge of $1 million in
2002 created the Sheila Johnson Institute, which focuses on diversity,
leadership, service and academic support. The Institute offers scholarships to
under-represented or economically disadvantaged students, diversity
programming, community outreach and service projects in the community,
leadership training and programs focused on character development, faculty
development and other initiatives across campus. The institute provides
students with direct, tangible financial support, but also provides them with
opportunities to meet with Ms. Johnson and attend arts and cultural events,
sporting events, and off-campus volunteer opportunities that enrich their
academic experience immensely.
A second $1,000,000 pledge in
2006 continued funding to the institute named in her honor. Throughout her
association with Morrisville State College, she has supported many other
scholarships and events on campus and has been very generous in terms of
offering in-kind support, including the donation of video production services
for the college’s most successful commercial campaign, which helped drive
enrollment in key academic programs, and the donation of professional clothing
for students in the college’s CSTEP program.
SUNY Policy and Procedure
related to the naming of facilities on the state-operated campuses are
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