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Supporting Mac potential

McMaster is bursting with potential. The people, the ideas, the collaboration – there is amazing and endless potential emerging at Mac each and every day. Here are some of the stories of everyday donors who activate this potential with their generosity. 

  • Why Marian gives

    Why Marian gives

    "My first teaching position was in Hamilton. I had never been there until I arrived to begin my teaching career. It seemed sensible to begin night and summer classes. After four years, I went to Mac for a year and graduated in 1957. Ian Wallis saw me in the Refectory line-up and we were married in 1959. I continue to support the many charities on our list, including McMaster." -Marian, Faculty of Humanities 1957

  • Why Ann gives

    Why Ann gives

    "I was helped in my McMaster education while I was raising six children. This education was very important for me to support my children. They, in turn were all able to pursue their dreams too." -Ann, Faculty of Social Sciences 1971

  • Why Roger gives

    Why Roger gives

    “At the end of my first year undergrad science in April 1964, I was awarded $250 (half the $500 Squire Scholarship for Math contest), the $50 Shenstone Prize (for highest marks in Physics and Chemistry) and the $100 Beauty Counselors Scholarship (for highest chemistry mark going into second year) That $400 total paid for most of my next year’s tuition of $465! I managed to finish four years living away from home debt-free (there were no government student loans in those days).” -Roger, Faculty of Science 1967

  • Why Amanda gives

    Why Amanda gives

    "During my time at McMaster, scholarships helped me pay my tuition every year. I was able to maintain my entrance scholarship, but one year I received an $800 scholarship from the University. It appeared on my account and I had to look it up because I didn't even know such scholarships existed! This is why I choose to donate to the University, because I hope it will help other students get scholarships, just like I did." - Amanda, Faculty of Humanities

  • Why Maguid gives

    Why Maguid gives

    "I give to McMaster in recognition of the tremendous role my education and experience at Mac played in my life. I want to help others to benefit from experience at Mac and build lifelong associations and friendships. Thank you Mac for making me who I am today. I am grateful for my fortunate positive experience at Mac." -Maguid, Faculty of Engineering 1974

  • Why Erin gives

    Why Erin gives

    "It's important to me to make philanthropic contributions because I believe that's such a critical element of citizenship, and I proudly support McMaster Arts & Science because artsci changed my life. I want to do what I can to ensure future generations of artscis have the best experience possible. I love that, as a McMaster donor, I can stay connected to my alma mater in this very meaningful way." - Erin, Arts & Science 2008

  • Why Ron gives

    Why Ron gives

    "After switching programs a couple of times at McMaster, I finished four years in the music education program in three years time. I went on to work in the music retail business and started my own choral ensemble. In 2000, I went back to do my mast'ers in music in choral conducting at the University of Toronto. Now I am the conductor of three choirs (Voices, Healey Willan Singers and Yip's Children's Choir (Canada)), as well as the supervisor at the Roy Thomson Hall Music Store, and teacher of theory & singing at Pro Music Conservatory of Music. The time at Mac I met my best friends and we're still in touch over 30 years later. Good memories!" -Ron Cheung, 1991 Faculty of Humanities, supporter of the McMaster Choir

  • Why Lori gives

    Why Lori gives

    "I give because I love knowing that my support provides countless opportunities for students to enrich their studies. The opportunities I had through my involvement with the Women’s Basketball team and the MacServe program helped shape who I am today. I’m grateful to the people who supported me and proud to support future generations of Marauders!" - Lori, DeGroote School of Business 2006

  • Why Hamed gives

    Why Hamed gives

    "I graduated from McMaster University less than two years ago. During my time at McMaster, I was a winner of generous Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) support three times, which was a big help for me financially while I was completing my Ph.D. degree. The very first thing on my mind after graduation was how I can pay back. I am glad that these small gifts to OGS have given me the chance to do exactly that." -Hamed, DeGroote School of Business PhD 2014

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Stories of our donors' generosity & vision

  • Paying forward an enriching student experience

    Paying forward an enriching student experience

    Anna D'Angela has spent much of her time at Mac working to enrich her school and community. As an Arts & Science student, she took on numerous leadership roles, including serving on the MSU executive. Now, as an MBA student, Anna gives back as a volunteer and a donor.

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  • Supporting LIVELab the perfect way to remember professor emeritus

    Supporting LIVELab the perfect way to remember professor emeritus

    “It was the perfect match for us.” Marjorie Smith and members of her family who work at McMaster have a combined 90 years of service between them. Together, they choose to support the McMaster LIVELab to honour her late husband Grant Smith, who was a Mac professor and loved classical music.

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  • From one scientist to another

    From one scientist to another

    Towards the end of his second year at McMaster, Logo Warille received some good news. He had been awarded a bursary. “It was a really great thing,” says Warille of the Douglas and Beverly Coleman Bursary. “It really touched me that McMaster alumni would think about helping students.” Currently pursuing his Honours BSc in biochemistry, Warille decided to find out who the donors were. He wanted to send them a thank-you letter.

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  • Discovering Canada's next generation of leaders

    Discovering Canada's next generation of leaders

    The Wilson Foundation is establishing a new awards program hosted at McMaster which will nurture and cultivate the country’s next generation of leaders, an elite group of students who are expected to tackle some of society’s most perplexing issues.

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  • Stemming the tide of the Canadian "Silver Tsunami”

    Stemming the tide of the Canadian "Silver Tsunami”

    A unique gift from the University’s Chancellor Suzanne Labarge to McMaster and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) will help develop and provide family doctors and caregivers with better ways of identifying and treating seniors with dementia.

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  • A Beam for the Liberal Arts

    A Beam for the Liberal Arts

    Chancellor Emeritus Lynton 'Red' Wilson signs a beam destined for the top of the building that will bear his name.

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  • McMaster arts community gets first look at Fitzhenry Studios and Atrium

    McMaster arts community gets first look at Fitzhenry Studios and Atrium

    Just a year after ground was broken on the construction site, McMaster has officially opened the Dr. Robert & Andrée Rhéaume Fitzhenry Studios and Atrium.

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  • An amazing discovery from the Levy bequest

    An amazing discovery from the Levy bequest

    A 17th-century portrait in the McMaster Museum of Art's collection and thought to be by Flemish artist Michael Sweerts has been proven to actually be by British artist Mary Beale - England's first professional female painter.

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  • David Braley Health Sciences Centre opens in downtown Hamilton

    David Braley Health Sciences Centre opens in downtown Hamilton

    McMaster has officially opened the $84.6 million David Braley Health Sciences Centre at the downtown Hamilton McMaster Health Campus. The 192,000-square-foot facility will be home to the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine’s Department of Family Medicine as well as the City of Hamilton’s Public Health Services.

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  • Cooper Construction Celebration Dinner | 2011

    Cooper Construction Celebration Dinner | 2011

    Dinner held in celebration of Cooper Construction's gift to the Ron Joyce Centre; June 20, 2011.

    View the slideshow

Donor profiles & gift announcements

  • Lynton “Red” Wilson – “The model McMaster alumnus”

    Lynton “Red” Wilson – “The model McMaster alumnus”

    Lynton “Red” Wilson ’62 ’95 (honorary) established storied careers in both public service and the private sector, but is best known for his time as the president and chief executive officer, then chairman, of BCE Inc. He is an officer of the Order of Canada and a companion of the Order of the Business Hall of Fame.

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  • Mel and Marilyn Hawkrigg – McMaster’s remarkable “co-chancellors”

    Mel and Marilyn Hawkrigg – McMaster’s remarkable “co-chancellors”

    Business executive Mel Hawkrigg `52 ’97 (honorary) and his wife Marilyn Hawkrigg are recognized by many in the McMaster family as the University’s First Couple of volunteering.

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  • Michael G. DeGroote – History making philanthropist

    Michael G. DeGroote – History making philanthropist

    Michael DeGroote, the entrepreneur who built Laidlaw Transport into one of North America’s most successful companies, began his philanthropic relationship with McMaster University in 1987. His philanthropy has included gifts to internal medicine, the McMaster Museum of Art, epilepsy research and literary criticism, but his legacy has grown primarily from four iconic gifts spread over more than a quarter century.

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  • Ron Foxcroft – Community leadership

    Ron Foxcroft – Community leadership

    Ron Foxcroft ’01 (honorary) became an honorary member of the McMaster Alumni Association in 2007, a distinction that reflects his long and active involvement with the McMaster community.

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  • Doug & June Barber – Volunteer leadership and philanthropy

    Doug & June Barber – Volunteer leadership and philanthropy

    Doug and June Barber have been active members of the McMaster family for decades, beginning with Doug Barber’s long-standing role as an instructor in McMaster’s Faculty of Engineering and growing to include significant volunteer roles, most notably his volunteer service to the McMaster Board of Governors where he was chair from 1999-2001.

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  • Teresa Cascioli invests in entrepreneurship

    Teresa Cascioli invests in entrepreneurship

    Teresa Cascioli ’83 began her career in the public sector before entering the business world where she rose to prominence as president & chief executive officer of Hamilton’s own Lakeport Brewing Corporation. In 2003, Profit Magazine and Chatelaine ranked her eighth on the list of the top 100 women entrepreneurs in Canada.

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  • Don Bridgman – Leading by example

    Don Bridgman – Leading by example

    A former varsity basketball player, Don Bridgman ’78 has been a dedicated McMaster donor and volunteer from almost the day of his graduation. One of the co-founders of Financial Capital Planners and now a key leader with Assante Wealth Management, Mr. Bridgman’s McMaster involvement has focused on three key priorities: providing financial advice, supporting the McMaster Alumni Association and playing a leadership role in supporting McMaster Athletics.

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  • Boris family donates $30 million to medical research and clinical care

    Boris family donates $30 million to medical research and clinical care

    On February 6, 2012, siblings Jackie Work and Les Boris announced, on behalf of the Boris family, their mother Marta and late father Owen, an innovative gift to McMaster. Giving through the Marta and Owen Boris Foundation, the family’s $30 million donation included funds to create the Boris Family Centre in Human Stem Cell Therapies which will speed the commercial development of discoveries at the McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute. The Boris family’s philanthropy also established fellowships, new technician positions and two senior research chairs, one in blood stem cells and the other in neural stem cells.

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  • Hamilton Community Rallies to Bring McMaster to Hamilton | 1930

    Hamilton Community Rallies to Bring McMaster to Hamilton | 1930

    The community’s investment was a visionary one. McMaster is now one of the city’s five largest employers and a 2009 study by Econometric Research Ltd. found that 16,703 Hamiltonians owe their permanent full-time equivalent jobs to the presence of McMaster in the community.

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  • Pirate Gift Announcement

    Pirate Gift Announcement

    Pirate Gift Group Celebration - McMaster Class

    View the slideshow

  • Celebrating 90 Years - Canadian Federation of University Women—Hamilton

    Celebrating 90 Years - Canadian Federation of University Women—Hamilton

    In February 1925, a group of women met in the Children’s Room of the Hamilton Public Library. Their goal? To found the University Women’s Club and promote “the advancement of education, art, science, literature and social reform.”

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  • Thanks from Fran Lasowski

    Thanks from Fran Lasowski

    Here’s a memory to cherish: Spending three months in Australia working on your thesis. Thanks to a travel award – funded by gifts of all sizes – Fran Lasowski was able to do just that.

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Videos

  • The Impact of Giving: K. Margaret Lyons

    The Impact of Giving: K. Margaret Lyons

    McMaster donor K. Margaret Lyons tell her stories on why she support our university. Thanks to a donation from Margaret and her husband Edward, the university was able to create the Lyons New Media Centre in 2002.

    Watch the video

  • The Impact of Giving: Susan Cunningham

    The Impact of Giving: Susan Cunningham

    Susan Cunningham understands the importance of geological studies for our planet's future. This is why the graduate of the Class of 1979 has established The Cunningham Chair in Geology.

    Watch the video

  • The Impact of Giving: Robert Fitzhenry

    The Impact of Giving: Robert Fitzhenry

    Hear Robert share why it was important to play a part in improving the facilities available to McMaster art students with his gift to the Fine Arts program.

    Watch the video

  • National Philanthropy Day 2015

    National Philanthropy Day 2015

    You can't tell just by looking, but every McMaster student has been affected by philanthropy. Every face has a story about the power donation, about the ability of donors to improve the student experience, to create new opportunities, to make a better future possible.

    Watch the video

  • The Power of Student Bursaries

    The Power of Student Bursaries

    “I’m going into my fourth year and I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the bursaries that support me”. Seyar THANKS YOU!

    Watch the video

  • National Philanthropy Day 2014

    National Philanthropy Day 2014

    On National Philanthropy Day, McMaster University pauses to thank YOU for the impact you have on the University and its students. We hope you feel inspired by all that is possible thanks to the entire McMaster family of supporters.

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  • McMaster's Opening & Dedication Ceremonies

    McMaster's Opening & Dedication Ceremonies

    McMaster memories on film from November 14, 1930.

    Watch the video

  • Why You Matter to McMaster

    Why You Matter to McMaster

    Thanks to donors like You, McMaster University is an amazing place to learn and grow.

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Our donor societies

McMaster recognizes exceptional generosity by including donors who meet certain criteria in one of the University’s two donor societies – the President’s Club or the Gilmour Society.

  • The President's Club

    The President's Club

    The President's Club offers McMaster’s most generous donors the opportunity to connect with the University and each other in exclusive ways, most notably at the annual President’s Club event. Founded in 1980 as a way to recognize individuals who make exceptional gifts in any given year, the President’s Club now includes organizations, foundations and corporations as well as individual donors. It also extends membership to donors who have made confirmed planned gifts or have made remarkable lifetime contributions to the University. The President’s Club membership categories are: Member: Donors who give a total of $500 or more in a given year Honorary Member: Donors who have made lifetime contributions to McMaster of $50,000 or more, or who have made a confirmed planned gift such as a charitable bequest or other future giving arrangement

    View the slideshow

  • The Gilmour Society

    The Gilmour Society

    The Gilmour Society recognizes donors who make gifts of up to $500 for three or more consecutive years. Named in honour of George Peel Gilmour – McMaster’s chief executive from 1941 to 1961 – the Gilmour Society originally recognized young alumni donors, but is now open to all eligible loyal donors.

Historic McMaster gifts

  • Senator William McMaster's Generosity Found a New University

    Senator William McMaster's Generosity Found a New University

    On April 23, 1887, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario approved chapter 95 of the Statutes of Ontario 1887 and officially created McMaster University by uniting Toronto Baptist College and Woodstock College.

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  • Herman Levy

    Herman Levy

    Near the end of Mr. Levy’s life, he donated 185 European and American works of art to the McMaster Museum of Art, thereby playing a defining role in establishing the museum as the best-attended university art gallery in Ontario and the home of a nationally and internationally respected collection.

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  • Michael G. DeGroote

    Michael G. DeGroote

    Michael DeGroote’s giving to McMaster has not only established his preeminence among Canadian philanthropists, but has helped redefine the University’s ambitions on four separate occasions while serving as an inspiration to other donors who have followed his example of generosity.

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  • David Braley

    David Braley

    Hamilton businessman and philanthropist David Braley made a new gift to McMaster.

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  • Ron Joyce

    Ron Joyce

    Ron Joyce ’98 (honorary) is the former police officer who famously co-founded the iconic Tim Hortons company.

    Read more

  • Boris Family

    Boris Family

    Boris family donates $30 Million to medical research and clinical care.

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  • Lynton "Red" Wilson

    Lynton "Red" Wilson

    Lynton 'Red' Wilson speaks to friends and members of the McMaster community Tuesday after announcing a new gift in support of the Wilson Institute for Canadian History.

    Read more, Watch the video

  • Suzanne Labarge

    Suzanne Labarge

    Suzanne Labarge makes milestone gift to support optimal aging.

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  • Robert Fitzhenry

    Robert Fitzhenry

    The Impact of Giving: Robert Fitzhenry, a member of the Class of 1954.

    Watch the video

  • MSU Student Centre Gift

    MSU Student Centre Gift

    MSU members contribute $24 Million to the McMaster University Student Centre.

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  • McMaster Alumni Association - More Than a Century of Philanthropy

    McMaster Alumni Association - More Than a Century of Philanthropy

    McMaster’s first graduates were the 16 members of the Class of 1894. Just a few months later, they founded The Alumni Society – now the McMaster Alumni Association – and the Association has been a strong philanthropic supporter of the University ever since.

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Past campaign recognition

  • Centennial Campaign donors

    Centennial Campaign donors

    To celebrate the University’s 100th anniversary, McMaster launched the Centennial Campaign in 1987. It was McMaster’s first truly modern fundraising campaign and it had what was then a highly ambitious goal of $25 million. By the close of the campaign in 1992, the University had raised $93 million, initiating a period of wide-spread campus construction and aggressive expansion in student support through scholarships and bursaries. In the wake of the Centennial Campaign, the University saw the rise of numerous new buildings including the DeGroote School of Business, the McMaster Museum of Art and the nearly complete renovation of Mills Memorial Library.

    Read more, View donor wall

  • DeGroote School of Business Centennial Campaign

    DeGroote School of Business Centennial Campaign

    As part of the Centennial Campaign from 1987-1990, McMaster’s Faculty of Business set out to attract philanthropic support for both a new building and an ambitious reinvention of the faculty’s mandate. When Canadian entrepreneur and philanthropist Michael G. DeGroote became the project’s lead donor in 1987 and agreed to support the faculty’s subsequent fundraising efforts, the goals were within reach.

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  • McMaster Museum of Art building and endowment

    McMaster Museum of Art building and endowment

    While the McMaster Museum of Art was founded in 1967, its profile and capacity were redefined significantly with the opening of a new facility in renovated space in Mills Memorial Library on June 11, 1994. In 1999, the University renamed the building that is the museum’s home in honour of former McMaster president and vice-chancellor Alvin A. Lee who has long been one of the McMaster Museum of Art’s strongest advocates.

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  • McMaster Museum of Art collection

    McMaster Museum of Art collection

    The McMaster Museum of Art – which moved to its current world-class facility in the Alvin A. Lee Building in 1994 – has long depended on the generosity of private donors to build one of the great university-based art collections in Canada. The nearly 6,000 works in the museum’s permanent collection feature particular strengths in early twentieth-century German Expressionist art, contemporary Canadian art, and modern and contemporary European art. Donations of both cash and art have driven the growth and quality of the permanent collection – most notably through the visionary donation from Hamilton businessman Herman H. Levy.

    Read more, View donor wall

  • McMaster Library Donors

    McMaster Library Donors

    The McMaster Library system includes four main library facilities: Mills Memorial Library (humanities and social sciences), H.G. Thode Library of Science & Engineering, Innis Library (business) and the Health Sciences Library. Philanthropic support has long played a key role in the growth and development of library facilities and collections. In fact, the first alumni fundraising campaign in McMaster’s history took place after a fire in the library of McMaster Hall, and Mills Memorial Library is named in recognition of a donation from the Davella Mills Foundation.

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  • Changing Tomorrow Today Campaign

    Changing Tomorrow Today Campaign

    In 1998, McMaster University launched what was, at the time, the largest fundraising campaign in its history. Called “Changing Tomorrow Today,” the campaign had an ambitious goal of $100 million. The campaign chair was future McMaster chancellor Lynton “Red” Wilson ’62 ’95 (honorary), who worked closely with then president & vice-chancellor Peter George and Roger Trull ’79, then McMaster’s vice-president of university advancement, to raise private support for the University both in Canada and abroad. The key campaign themes included student learning, connecting research and teaching, and recruiting and retaining the best professors. When the Changing Tomorrow Today campaign closed in October 2001, it had raised more than $128 million against its original goal while leveraging an additional $181 million in new government support and another $83 million in sponsored research funding.

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  • McMaster University Student Centre Campaign

    McMaster University Student Centre Campaign

    By the time McMaster’s Board of Governors approved a fundraising campaign to attract more than $10 million in private support to what was then called the University Centre Project, the centre had been the dream of more than a decade’s worth of students. In fact, in 1987, McMaster’s full-time undergraduate students – the members of the McMaster Students Union – committed to a $15 annual levy to help fund the project and inspire greater support for the University Centre within the McMaster family.

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  • Athletics & Recreation Centre and Stadium (ARCS) Campaign

    Athletics & Recreation Centre and Stadium (ARCS) Campaign

    In 2004, the University launched the Athletics & Recreation Centre and Stadium campaign with legendary entrepreneur and basketball official Ron Foxcroft guiding the campaign as chairman.

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  • Ron Joyce Centre Burlington

    Ron Joyce Centre Burlington

    The Ron Joyce Centre in Burlington is the home of the MBA and executive education programs of the DeGroote School of Business. The centre offers 90,000 square feet of state-of-the-art classrooms, meeting spaces and lecture facilities, all within a highly sustainable design that received LEED Gold certification.

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  • Engineering Technology Building

    Engineering Technology Building

    The Engineering Technology Building (ETB) – a 125,000 square foot facility located near the University’s Main Street entrance – is home to programs in emerging areas of both study and research including the School of Biomedical Engineering, the Walter G. Booth School of Engineering Practice and the McMaster-Mohawk Bachelor of Technology Partnership. The award-winning design (Urban Design and Architecture Awards’ Award of Excellence) meets LEED environmental standards and features innovative elements such as the elliptical classroom.

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  • University Club – Great Hall renovation campaign

    University Club – Great Hall renovation campaign

    Alumni Memorial Hall, the building that is home to the University Club (formerly the Faculty Club), was built on the strength of donations from alumni in the 1940’s and 1950’s. In 2009 and 2010, a group of nearly 60 donors gave to support the rejuvenation and preservation of the building’s historic and unique Great Hall. Used for both daily food service and events, the Great Hall is home to the iconic Moulton Window.

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  • Science & Engineering Building (JHE Annex) donors

    Science & Engineering Building (JHE Annex) donors

    As part of the Centennial Campaign from 1987-1990, private donors along with what was then the Ministry of Colleges and Universities of the Province of Ontario contributed to the construction of new classroom and laboratory space to be added at the southwest corner of the John Hodgins Engineering Building. Opened in 1991, the Science & Engineering Building is more commonly called the JHE Annex. The donor wall recognizes pacesetting donors to the campaign.

    Read more, View donor wall