Grand Gratitude

Donors feted at College Park Center dedication

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When fueled by passion, innovation, and generosity, dreams can become reality. Look no further than College Park Center for proof.

The $78 million special events showpiece provided a striking backdrop for a dedication celebration in March to honor UT Arlington’s closest friends and supporters for helping make the long-anticipated venture a dream come true.

College Park Center represents the hopes and dreams of so many,” President James D. Spaniolo said during remarks to the 400 attending. “It has quickly become a metaphor for all that the University has become and all that we aspire to be—first class, first tier, first place.”

The gala transformed the venue’s floor into an elegant setting kindled with hues of blue and orange. Large video screens showed two multimedia presentations, one chronicling the center from its groundbreaking to its Feb. 1 grand opening and the other thanking donors for their support. The event also featured performances by the UT Arlington Symphony Orchestra, Jazz Orchestra, A Cappella Choir, and University Choir.

Among the major College Park Center commitments recognized were $5 million from Carrizo Oil & Gas Inc., the University’s partner in developing natural gas resources; $1 million from alumni Alan and Bonnie Smith Petsche to name the basketball/volleyball court Petsche Court; and $750,000 from the Moritz family for Moritz Plaza, which serves as the center’s main entrance.

The evening featured a dinner and reception celebrating the generous contributions of 1895 Society members, whose annual support of $1,000 or more continues to propel UT Arlington toward its goal of becoming a major national research institution.

Old notions and perceptions of UT Arlington are quickly fading, and a new chapter has begun,” President Spaniolo said. “Without the unwavering support of our philanthropic partners, none of this would be possible.”

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