The Lubbock Christian University Foundation announced today that a $10 million gift has been given to construct a new nursing building on the campus of Lubbock Christian University. The gift was generously donated by the J.T. and Margaret Talkington Charitable Foundation in honor of Margaret Talkington, and it is the largest gift the LCU Foundation has received to date. The new facility will house LCU’s Department of Nursing and the Covenant School of Nursing (CSON). The two nursing programs formalized a partnership in 2011 to benefit future nursing students.
“This is an historic moment for Lubbock Christian University as we celebrate the transformative generosity of the Talkington Foundation. This gift will advance our mission of changing lives, strengthen our partnership with Covenant School of Nursing, and enhance nursing education in this region and beyond,” states Lubbock Christian University President Tim Perrin.
“In 2009, Margaret Talkington invited us to her home to discuss the LCU/Covenant School of Nursing partnership and our dream to build a center on LCU’s campus to house the two programs,” says LCU Foundation President David Pruett. “We are excited that this building is becoming a reality, and we are so grateful to the J.T. and Margaret Talkington Foundation, the LCU Foundation Board members, and dedicated members of the community, like W. R. Collier, who have made this groundbreaking possible.”
The 57,000 square foot building is designed specifically for educating nurses, and will include technology-rich classrooms, computer labs, faculty offices, a student commons area, and a 500 seat auditorium. The building will accommodate future growth to meet an increasing demand for nurses in the region. Construction is set to commence in December 2013.
“We always knew the partnership between CSON and LCU Department of Nursing would bring opportunities that alone may not have existed,” explains Alicia Anger, Dean of the Covenant School of Nursing. “One of the most exciting opportunities for students of both programs will be a new building we can call home. Not only will this new facility strengthen the relationship of the existing partnership, but it will provide an environment for students in both programs to blossom, which will, in turn, benefit the people of our region as well.”
J.T. and Margaret Talkington served the Lubbock community from 1946-2010 in many ways, including their active support of the Early Learning Centers of Lubbock, the Louise H. Underwood Center for the Arts, Lubbock ISD, and the establishment of the Margaret Talkington School for Young Women Leaders. Along with their philanthropic spirits, Mrs. Talkington was well known for her high fashion clothing store, “Margaret’s.” The Talkington Foundation seeks to honor the history of J.T. and Margaret Talkington’s philanthropy and entrepreneurial endeavors in Lubbock by supporting proposals that enhance the quality of life through arts, culture, community-based education, youth services, and other areas of community improvement. The opportunity to expand on the ability to provide more qualified nurses for the South Plains area made the new nursing building a natural investment and fit, particularly considering Mrs. Talkington’s service to the Covenant Foundation and the Talkington Foundation’s efforts to support community-based education.
“Margaret named people to the board who she thought would make gifts that she would make when she was living,” states Norton Baker, President of the Talkington Foundation Board. “She started making gifts to this project during her lifetime, and the board is pleased to continue that with this full $10 million contribution to the [LCU] Foundation. It looks like a project that was made in heaven, and we are glad to be a part of it.”
The Talkington Foundation gift was a direct result of an initiative of the LCU Foundation, and is the largest one-time gift thus far. The LCU Foundation works specifically on strategic initiatives to enhance the LCU mission of changing lives. The LCU Foundation has taken on the name Momentum to signify what is at the heart of their mission – building on the momentum of each successful project to create exciting opportunities for the university and its students. Along with the initiative to develop the partnership between Covenant School of Nursing and LCU’s Department of Nursing by raising funds for the new center for nursing education, the LCU Foundation is also pursuing strategic initiatives for a new science building, the Jones Leadership Center, the Washington, D.C. internship program, and support for the transition of LCU Athletics from NAIA to NCAA Division II.