Goodbye Business Administration Building, Hello Maurer Center

By Bailey Smith, Schmidthorst College of Business Communications Intern

Schmidthorst College of Business faculty and staff recently said goodbye to their longtime home in the Business Administration Building and moved to their new home in the Robert W. and Patricia A. Maurer Center. 

Built in 1972 at a cost of $2.3 million, the Business Administration Building has been renamed Central Hall because of its central location on campus. It is now the new home of the School of Nursing and will undergo some renovations of its own to create state-of-the-art learning facilities and a nursing simulation space.

The transformational naming gift from Robert and Patricia Maurer of Bowling Green provided major support for the new business facility. The Maurers, who have been prominent in the Bowling Green community for many years, have generously supported the University through a variety of philanthropic ventures. The cutting-edge building was named in recognition of their gift and longtime support and service to the University. 

MaurerCenterInterior3Construction on the Maurer Center began after the groundbreaking ceremony in October 2018. The state-of-the-art facility, located along the Wooster Street corridor, includes the renovation of Hanna Hall and a 50,224-square-foot addition. The Maurer Center is designed to allow discovery-based learning, hands-on experimentation and collaboration to support the development and education of 21st century business leaders and entrepreneurs.

In addition to the Maurer’s substantial gift, their philanthropy has been joined and enhanced by other prominent members of the college’s family, including Peggy Schmeltz, Paul and Margo Hooker, John and Ruth Riedl, and Michael and Mary Lee McGranaghan. 

William Schmeltz spent three decades at BGSU as an accounting professor, a department chairman and dean of the College of Business Administration. Named for generous donors William (Bill) and Peggy Schmeltz ‘50, ‘70, the William F. and Peggy L. Schmeltz Atrium will be the premier gathering space for educational and networking events for faculty, staff, students and business professionals.

“The thing I will miss most about the old building is the Hub,” said Brooke Schlatter, a third-year marketing student. “It’s the feeling of excitement walking up the stairs and the instant surprise when you see friends, professors or faculty. However, change is wonderful, as is our new home in the Maurer Center! While I will miss the Hub, I am looking forward to spending time in the beautiful Schmeltz Atrium.”

MaurerCenterInterior2

Paul and Margo Hooker are strong, longtime supporters of the Schmidthorst College of Business. They have provided numerous gifts, but the latest gift has a more emotional connection for Paul especially. Their financial commitment has been used to name the Student Services Hub in memory of Paul’s aunt, Sister Mary Noreen Gray, whose life was spent serving others as an educator and humanitarian. The Sister Noreen Gray R.S.M. Student Services Hub will be a one-stop shop for business students with offices for recruiting, advising, education abroad, and academic and career coaching. 

“We are very excited about the Student Services Hub,” said Dr. Tim Chambers, director of Undergraduate Student Development. “Not only is it an impressive facility, its design will allow for state-of-the-art student support.

Michael (Mike) ’80 and Mary Lee ’80 McGranaghan provided a gift to create the Dean’s Suite, which is centrally located in the building and houses the offices for the dean and associate Deans.

The Riedl Courtyard, named after its generous donors, John and Ruth Riedel, provides an outdoor meeting space perfect for small events and gatherings. Various conference, collaboration and meeting rooms will also provide accessible and functional space for students, faculty, staff, business partners and the community.

The Maurer Center was originally scheduled to be finished in mid-July. The move was delayed by two weeks due to social distancing guidelines on the work site and factory closures during the COVID-19 lockdown. Faculty and staff moved in on Aug.13 and 14. The dedication of the Robert W. and Patricia A. Maurer Center is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 11, at 6 p.m. and will be livestreamed on YouTube.