New student center to be named for Baker president Pat Long

Drawing of Student Union Entrance

Trustee Susanne Richardson Teel, ’69, did not give a second thought about her choice for the name of the expansion to Harter Union.

“When the University granted me the naming rights for this beautiful new student space, I began thinking about all the amazing leadership at this institution,” Teel said before Baker’s Founders Day audience on Feb. 12. “For 155 years, visionaries in education have shaped Baker University into the premier private university in the state of Kansas. Each one has put his or her own stamp here, excelling in teaching, guiding and caring. One among those, though, in my opinion, stands a bit taller, reaches a bit further and gives a bit more freely.”

As the lead donor for the project, Teel decided that the Pat McCaslin Long Student Center was the perfect name. The renovation to the center will include a coffee bar and cafe, meeting spaces, billiard tables and computers, and a multipurpose event center with the capacity for 400 people. Nearly $2 million has been raised for the renovation and addition. Renovations to the cafeteria are scheduled to be completed by the time students return for the fall 2013 semester.

Teel values President Long’s commitment to students.

“This person has made the difficult decisions required of a president while remaining grounded in the University’s mission and values for seven years,” Teel continued at Founders Day. “She has grown programs and developed cutting-edge initiatives that have positioned Baker for the most sustainable of futures. Her commitment to her students is unparalleled, and she has set a new precedent for engagement. Most of all, she has done so in the only way she knows how: completely true to herself.”

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