Angelo State University today (April 4) hosted a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for its Archer College of Health and Human Services, which is located within the new Health and Human Services Building at 2341 Vanderventer St.
In October 2015, ASU received a $5 million gift from the James B. and Lois. R. Archer Charitable Foundation in San Angelo to help expand the facilities that support ASU’s health and human services curriculum. The Texas Tech University System Board of Regents then approved changing the name of the College of Health and Human Services to the “Archer College of Health and Human Services.”
Today, ASU President Brian J. May and Jamie Akin, vice president for development and alumni relations, were joined by Robert Duncan, chancellor of the Texas Tech University System, and State Rep. Drew Darby for the grand opening, along with James and Lois Archer and Dr. Leslie Mayrand, dean of the college that bears their name.
“The Archers’ philanthropy is a terrific statement about their ability to envision the future for our students in health and human services,” May said. “This college includes our only doctoral program in physical therapy, our nationally recognized nursing and psychology programs, and several of our most popular academic departments in terms of student enrollment. The generous support of the Archers has allowed us to both improve and expand the programs and facilities for all the students in the college, and we couldn’t be more thankful.”
In June 2016, the Texas Legislature and Gov. Greg Abbott approved House Bill 100, which allowed for funding for construction of the new Health and Human Services (HHS) Building, and the Archer Foundation gift extended that funding such that further programs could be added.
Construction of the $26 million, 50,000-square-foot HHS Building began in the fall of 2016 and was completed in time for classes this spring. It houses the offices of the Archer College of Health and Human Services, as well as expanded labs and other facilities for the Department of Nursing and Department of Physical Therapy, several large lecture halls and a new Academic Testing Center.
“The Vincent Building served us well,” Mayrand said. “But facilities are extremely important to students, prospective students and their parents. Our new facilities are state of the art, and the Archers certainly played a key role in that. Because of their generosity, the entire college is really able to utilize the new building to its full potential.”