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Sunday, June 4, 2023


BREAKING: $20M donation will rename College of the Arts

Donors gathered at a “thank you” event in a tent set up in front of the Ezekiel Cullen Building Wednesday night, when the $20 million donation from the John. P McGovern Foundation was announced. | Julie Aracia/The Cougar

In recognition of the contribution, UH will rename the arts college to the Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts. It’s unclear when the change will take effect. 

The gift will create a permanent endowment benefiting arts students and faculty and facilitating outreach in the community, according to a news release provided to The Cougar. The college will be the first at the University named after a former student and also the first named after a woman. Kathrine McGovern said she attended UH in the 1950s and 60s.

“I would like the McGovern College of the Arts to be committed to excellence in the teaching, nurturing and support of all its students, with the hope that those same students will use their talents to give back to the college and the city of Houston,” said Kathrine McGovern in the news release.

The John. P McGovern Foundation gave a $75 million gift to the UTHealth Medical School in November 2015, which subsequently was known as the John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern Medical School.

“My background is in art,” Kathrine McGovern said in the news release. “UH is where I first developed an interest in arts. It is a passion that continues to provide me joy to this day.”

The official launch was a thank you event for donors and the public announcement of a $1 billion capital campaign, “Here, We Go: The Campaign for the University of Houston.” The campaign aims to support student scholarships and fellowships, attract and retain top faculty, advance academic programs and building a nationally relevant athletics program.

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