FLORENCE---Branch Banking and Trust Corp. is donating $200,000 to the Francis Marion University Foundation as part of the university’s “Campaign for Excellence.”
The gift was announced today (Aug. 17) by Ashpy P. Lowrimore of Florence, regional president of BB&T, who is also the chairman of FMU’s capital campaign.
The gift will be used to renovate Wallace Cottage on the FMU campus to create an alumni-faculty house. The house will be called the Amelia Wallace/BB&T Alumni-Faculty House.
Lowrimore said that he was pleased that BB&T could be part of such a worthwhile endeavor. “Our bank has a strong commitment to higher education and to Francis Marion University,” he said. “We at BB&T are delighted to be part of helping the university secure the funding to meet critical needs.”
He added that corporate support from the community is vital in ensuring the continued growth and prosperity of Francis Marion University.
FMU President Fred Carter said that the transformation of Wallace Cottage into the alumni-faculty house is an integral component of the long-term outreach plan for FMU.
“The alumni-faculty house will serve as a central meeting place for the Francis Marion University family and will be available to corporate citizens and members of the community,” he said.
“We are grateful to BB&T for this generous gift so that the renovation may begin,” said Carter. “FMU alumni, faculty, staff and some corporate entities have already contributed $194,000 toward this project. Now with the BB&T gift, we can move forward with construction.”
Built in the 1930’s, the cottage served as a temporary home for the Wallace family, following a fire that destroyed the main Wallace residence. The Wallace family provided the original land donation for the university and the home for the university president.
Located between Stokes Administration Building and Stanton Academic Computer Center, the cottage is a one-story, wood-framed structure with approximately 2,000 square feet. Mrs. Amelia Wallace and her family occupied the cottage until her death in June 1994. Since then the cottage has remained vacant.
The renovation plans call for the house to be enlarged to more than 4,000 square feet by adding a conference room, bedrooms to house overnight guests to the university, rest rooms and a special reception area. The roofing, insulation, plumbing, electrical and kitchen facilities will also be upgraded.
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