MAAC Dedication Held at Mount Union
October 13, 2009
The McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex – or MAAC for short – was dedicated on Friday evening at Mount Union College.
The MAAC, which includes the McPherson Center for Health and Well-Being, Timken Physical Education Building and the Peterson Field House located on Hartshorn Street across from Mount Union Stadium, was made possible by the generosity of many individuals.
“Today is a day to thank those who have generously provided support for the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex,” said Dr. Richard F. Giese, president of Mount Union College during his opening remarks.
Lee Ann (Johnston '83) Thorn, chair of the Board of Trustees accepted the complex on behalf of the Board of Trustees, Dr. Patricia Draves, dean of the College accepted the complex on behalf of the faculty and staff at Mount Union and Margaret “Maggie” Zronek, a junior exercise science major and president of the exercise science club from Solon accepted the complex on behalf of the student body.
“These facilities not only support the lifestyle of today’s college students, but they have sent a very clear message that Mount Union College is interested in providing the best academic and social atmosphere for its students,” said Zronek when showing her appreciation on behalf of the student body. “In doing so, the overall experience for each of us in greatly enhanced. On behalf of the students, we thank the donors honored here today for supporting us.”
The MAAC has been named in honor of Dr. Richard C. “Mac” ’50 and Dorothy (Werstler ’49) “DJ” McPherson, whose generosity provided for the McPherson Center for Human Health and Well-Being in 1996 as well as for this latest addition and renovation.
McPherson graduated magna cum laude from Mount Union in 1950 with a degree in biology. He also earned a doctorate of medicine from Ohio State University with cum laude honors in 1954 and a master’s degree in medical sciences in 1960. He completed his residency in general surgery at Ohio State University. As a student at Mount Union, he met his wife DJ during a religion course taught in Chapman Hall. She earned a bachelor of arts degree in sociology from Mount Union in 1949.
During his professional career, McPherson served as a surgeon in the U.S. Army, a faculty member at the University of Louisville Medical School, served as president of Medical Realty Company and was a surgeon at the Arnett Clinic where he specialized in office minor surgery.
During the dedication ceremony, McPherson discussed the need for the health and wellness complex. “Health and fitness are ever-growing aspects of daily life and students view exercise not only as a means of staying well, but as a way to socialize with others,” said McPherson. “More than 25 percent of the College's 2,200 students participate in intercollegiate athletics and more than 75 percent of the entire student body is involved in intramurals or fitness activities.”
The MAAC features a two-story recreation and fitness center, field house, natatorium, auxiliary gymnasium, wrestling center, indoor track and tennis courts as well as an exercise science center and laboratory, athletic training facility, classrooms, laboratories, office spaces and an area dedicated to student recruitment. The Timken lobby also features the current members of the M Club Hall of Fame.
Other individuals who have graciously supported this $17.3 million project include
Mr. and Mrs. Marty E. (Patricia) Adams, The Adams Recruitment Room; Mr. Lloyd E. and Mrs. Evelyn J. (Shuster ’49) Barker; Mr. Christopher Cicchinelli ’98 and Ms. Patricia Brisben, Cicchinelli Fitness Center; Mr. and Mrs. P. Roger (Patricia) Clay ’61, Clay Exercise Science Center; Mr. and Mrs. Keith (Tina) Downard ’74, Downard Office Suite; Mr. Patrick J. and Mrs. Cheryl (Sheely ’76) Eaton ’75; Hammond Construction, Hammond Natatorium; The Huntington National Bank, Huntington National Bank Lobby; Harley C. and Mary Hoover Price Foundation, The Estate of Dr. Lee C. Lee ’57, The Estate of Miss Evelyn M. MacBurney ’44, Mary Renkert Wendling Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. John F. (Madge) Peters, Peters Exercise Science Laboratory; Mrs. Josephine P. (Hoiles ’40) Peterson and the late Mr. Donald A. Peterson ’39, Peterson Field House; Mr. and Mrs. Sean S. (Caroline) Sweeney ’79, Sweeney Gymnasium; and The Timken Foundation of Canton, Timken Physical Education Building and Lobby.
The facility renovations will also support Mount Union’s sustainability initiatives – a solar panel roof is in the process of being installed and should be completed by the end of October. Nearly 90 percent of the Peterson Field House roof that is facing the north side of campus will be covered with solar energy roofing panels. Once completed, the sunlight that is converted into electricity will be enough electricity to fully power five to eight houses. The roofing system was made possible through the generosity of Jack and Madge Peters.
After the ceremony concluded, Greg King, vice president for college advancement invited everyone to tour the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex.