$15 million donation from Taylor Family Foundation makes way for MRU student spaces
by Riggs Zyrille Vergara, Publishing Editor
Philanthropists Don Taylor and Ruth Taylor announce a $15 million donation to remodel Mount Royal University’s old and empty spaces to physical hubs for learning and student services through the Taylor Family Foundation.
Complementing the $50 million donation from the Government of Alberta, the university will renovate the former MRU spaces to create four large multifunctional classrooms.
The former library space at the centre of the main campus will also most likely be renovated into a welcoming hub for student services. The hub will gear towards student innovation and inclusion. This includes spaces for experiential learning programs and interactive presentation areas for the broader university community.
“We can’t begin to thank the Taylor family enough for their generosity,” said President and Vice-Chancellor Tim Rahilly. “They have played a pivotal role in transforming our campus to serve the needs of 21st century learners.”
The gift from the Taylors was given in honour of Don Taylor’s father, Robert Samuel (Sam) Taylor.
“Basically my dad was a farmer, which is a respectable way to make a living. He always encouraged me, though, to advance my education, which was quite unusual back then,” said Don. “He would have been very proud of having his name associated with the education process.”
This is not the first time the Taylor family has made a generous donation to the university. Back in 2010, the Taylor family made a $21 million donation towards the building of the Taylor Centre for the Performing Arts and the Bella Concert Hall.
“When we make a donation, it is not a one-way street,” said Don Taylor. “We get great satisfaction and joy from the results of our gifts.”
Don Taylor is the president of the global business Engineered Air and Ruth Taylor is a former school counsellor and vice principal. Their family’s foundation aims to support education, preserve teaching and history and make advancements to the arts and healthcare.
“On behalf of students of MRU I just want to extend my greatest gratitude to the Taylor Family Foundation for their generous donation to our university,” said Spirit River Striped Wolf, President of the Students’ Association of Mount Royal University.
“This donation will enhance the student experience by supporting much-needed classroom and gathering spaces, as well as the supports and services provided on campus. This year has been a difficult one for all of us and this investment is a great reminder of how much students are valued in our community.” Striped Wolf added.