Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) has received $7,800,000 in donor gifts in the past four months. Five million dollars of the donation is designated toward the construction of the University¹s proposed state-of-the-art World Communication Center (WCC).
In July 2011, a local church gave $50,000 toward the WCC. The following month, an unrestricted $464,986 was donated from the William and Irene Farwell estate. Another $200,000 was given by a first-time donor for scholarships to assist orphans, widows, dependents of widows, and financially impoverished students. In September, another strong supporter of the university committed $100,000 toward the WCC.
Later that month, a family, not affiliated with the university, felt led to establish a scholarship fund for SAGU students. The family wrote a check for $2 million that will be awarded in scholarships for the next 20 years at $100,000 per year. Additionally, after hearing the vision of the WCC, the family felt led to give another $5 million toward the building of the facility.
Since 2000, SAGU has increased scholarships by 115 percent. Ninety-two percent of all SAGU students now receive financial aid. Forty-seven percent of the student body receives institutional scholarships and grants alone.
In addition to expanding office and classroom space, the WCC will address the needs of media intensive programs like Communication Arts and Music. The facility will provide cutting edge media tools, audio/video editing labs, recording studios and a digital multi-keyboard training room. It will also house band/choral rehearsal halls and a new Fine Arts auditorium, which will provide additional means to partner with the community.
Construction on the 70,000 square feet WCC is projected to begin Summer 2012 on the eastern perimeter of campus, just north of Nelson Memorial Library. The first phase of construction will develop the part of the facility containing classrooms, faculty offices and some of the labs, studios and rehearsal halls. The Fine Arts auditorium will be the centerpiece of the second phase.
In the past 10 years, SAGU has doubled facility square footage with the construction of the second phase of the Sheaffer Full Life Center, Bridges and Teeter Residential Halls, and the Garrison Wellness Center. A new residential hall, adjacent to Bridges Hall and Teeter Hall, is projected in the next 2-3 years if the current rate of growth continues for on-campus students.