LAWRENCE — A $2.7 million gift from the Hall Family Foundation will provide lasting support for the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas. The gift includes $500,000 to establish a distinguished professorship in the collaborative humanities, $1 million to create a postdoctoral fellowship in the digital humanities and $1 million to establish a mid-career fellowship in the humanities. It also includes $210,000 to support Hall Center initiatives during the next three years.
“The Hall Family Foundation is pleased to provide this support to the Hall Center, a center of excellence at KU that we are all proud of,” said Angela Andresen McClelland, vice president of the Hall Family Foundation and a member of the Hall Center’s advisory board.
“Under the leadership of Victor Bailey, the Hall Center has emerged as an outstanding humanities center on a national level, as recognized by grants awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities,” said McClelland. “We believe the new professorship and fellowships will help support KU’s broader goals to recruit and retain exceptional faculty and expand research capabilities. The foundation applauds the Hall Center’s inexorable aspiration to build a rich intellectual community in the humanities at KU.”
In 2011, the Hall Center received a $425,000 National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant to develop programs that advance collaborative, interdisciplinary research in the humanities. The gift from the Hall Family Foundation will buttress programs made possible by the challenge grant. Additionally, this will strengthen the community of resident scholars within the center.
“I am deeply grateful to the Hall Family Foundation,” said Hall Center Director Victor Bailey. “This generous gift burnishes the Hall Center’s reputation as an innovative hub for humanities scholarship. The foundation’s judicious and enduring support has helped to create a center of research excellence in the humanities second to none.”
The Hall Center’s mission is to stimulate and support research in the humanities, arts and social sciences, especially of an interdisciplinary kind, at KU. The center brings together faculty and graduate students with common interests from various disciplines to enable them to build on each other’s ideas and to share their knowledge within the university and with the wider community.
The Hall Center for the Humanities at KU was named for Joyce and Elizabeth Hall in 1985 in recognition of the foundation’s gifts for humanities professorships and program support. Through the years, the Hall Family Foundation has provided generous support for the Hall Center, including a $790,000 gift in 2012.
The gift counts toward Far Above: The Campaign for Kansas, the university’s $1.2 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign. Far Above seeks support to educate future leaders, advance medicine, accelerate discovery and drive economic growth to seize the opportunities of the future.