The School of Business and Economics at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops will be named after Bob Gaglardi.
President Brett Fairbairn made this announcement on Thursday morning, as he revealed a $10 million donation from Bob’s four children. It was made with the support of Northland Properties, the company founded by Bob in 1963.
“This is the first time in TRU’s history that a faculty or school has been named. The impact associated with this donation extends beyond monetary value and represents leadership for TRU,” he said, noting that this is the largest donation ever made in history. of the University.
“It will make a real difference in the lives of students at the TRU School of Business and Economics.”
“It’s truly a historic day for TRU. It means new opportunities for students, support to complete their education, better facilities. It’s truly amazing what this will do.
Andrea Gaglardi says it was Fairbairn and TRU Dean Mike Henry’s idea to name the school after his father.
“The college conversation started about five years ago and we’ve stayed in touch ever since,” she said. “As the university continues to grow, it has become clear that there is this opportunity and the need for the new physical building where the business school can be housed.”
“We had just said that we would be interested in helping with the construction. They came back to us and told us that we thought we could really grow our school and give it more opportunities by putting your name on the building.
This is the second building in Kamloops to bear the Gaglardi family name in the past three months. In November 2021, the family donated $15 million for Royal Inland Hospital’s new patient care tower, which will be named after Bob’s parents, Phil and Jennie Gaglardi.
Speaking to the media after the announcement, Henry said the new $50-60 million facility is in an advanced planning stage, but notes that there are no estimates of when construction might. to start.
“It frankly depends on whether other donors are willing to support us and whether the provincial government is committed, perhaps through an infrastructure program, to providing funding,” he said. declared. “We have $8 million of the $10 million here, and generally we have to think we have to raise another $10 million to match.
Henry says the university has already presented a business case for this new building to the government. He also noted that the focus will be on experiential learning, with things like an expanded financial lab and other hands-on learning, as well as street-facing businesses on the ground floor.
“It’s meant to be built on the east gate as you enter campus,” he said. “This will be the first time the business school will meet in a five- or six-story building. It will be an important academic center for student learning and research.
Henry also noted that using Bob Gaglardi’s name and reputation will help TRU gain credibility and connections, not just in Canada, but around the world, including when it comes to hiring. diplomas.
“We’re looking for a lot of interaction, not just on campus and at our school, but a place where businesses from across the region and from within BC can come for advice and hire students,” said he declared.
“We’re going to put a lot of energy and focus on experiential education. There will be other types of learning and hands-on learning spaces so that when our students graduate, they don’t just know business, they know how to do business. »
In addition to this new academic building, the Gaglardi donation will be used to support research, programs, and financial awards for students and faculty in business and economics.