Donors are joining together to support the renovation of a beloved campus landmark and have contributed more than $231,000 to the project so far, which is part of Ever Ahead: The Campaign for Mary Baldwin College. The college is seeking construction bids for a phased renovation plan for the Alumnae House, and work should begin within a few months. Before kicking off the full-scale renovation, Baber Enterprises completed preliminary roof repairs in February.
MBC Director of Development Janet Hogg is working with the Alumnae/i Association Board of Directors to raise a total of $750,000 for the complete renovation. Plans include restoring the house to its original open floor plan, upgrading the HVAC system, refinishing hardwood floors, making the first floor handicap accessible, adding a catering kitchen, and much more. When the project is complete, MBC will generate revenue for continued maintenance through hosting events there and offering three rooms for overnight lodging to alumni and guests.
Former Alumnae/i Board member Jane Townes ’69 stepped up as a lead supporter of the project. “Mary Baldwin alumnae should have a place on campus that both acknowledges their importance and encourages their engagement in the college community. The Alumnae House should be a symbol of the significance of alumnae in the life of the college as well as a useful venue for gatherings and meetings — a point of connection for alumnae of all ages,” she said.
Townes also looks forward to the Alumnae House offering a place for college guests to stay overnight, recalling a time when she brought a prospective student to campus and stayed there. “That student was so impressed, she ended up applying to Mary Baldwin and becoming a Bailey Scholar, a top student, and a successful graduate. Offering lodging for special guests will help show off all of the college’s best qualities,” she said.
“Our alumni are excited to see this project move forward,” Hogg said. “They take pride in Mary Baldwin and want to preserve the beauty of the campus. I know they will be eager to tour the house when the restoration is complete.”