ALMA — Alma College announced this week that its new Learning Commons would be named after one of its most generous donors, Greg Hatcher.
Set to be complete in early 2023, the Greg Hatcher Learning Commons will effectively be the heart of Alma College’s campus — an iconic place to learn, socialize, study, create and live. Hatcher, a member of the Alma College Class of 1983 who currently serves on the college Board of Trustees, is the largest alumni donor in the history of the college.
“From the time I was a student, the liberal arts foundation that Alma College was built on has been the key driver to bringing students to the college and ensuring their success in years to come,” Hatcher said. “As a donor, you want to make sure that your gifts have the biggest impact possible. That said, I can think of no better way to make an impact than to do something that will support the academic core of Alma College, which continues to set the standard for liberal arts colleges nationwide.
“Although only four years of my life were spent at Alma College, they were perhaps the most critical four years — somewhere I was able to set a blueprint for my life. I hope this gift will offer current and future students opportunities to do the same, in academics and elsewhere.”
Based in Little Rock, Arkansas, Hatcher is the CEO of The Hatcher Agency, the largest health insurance agency in Arkansas. Hatcher has been a member of the college Board of Trustees since 2008. He is a member of the Athletics Hall of Fame.
A public relations major during his time at the college, he also served as president of his junior class, president of the student body, co-founded the Fellowship of Christian Athletes organization. In 1983, Hatcher was named Alma College’s Top Senior Graduate, as well as Top Fraternity Man for both the local chapter and nationwide branch of Tau Kappa Epsilon.
“Academics and student life were two of the main focuses of Greg Hatcher’s time at Alma College, so it’s extremely fitting that this world-class facility is named in his honor,” said Alma College President Jeff Abernathy. “Greg has been a remarkable steward of student success at Alma College; someone who has shown his love, loyalty and commitment time and again. We admire him for the care he has shown our students and deeply appreciate his support.”
The Greg Hatcher Learning Commons is one of the most significant building projects to come to Alma College in years — a complete modernization of the existing college library into a hub of academic and social activity, with versatile spaces for learning, dining and collaborating. When complete, it will support the academic core of the institution: the liberal arts, faculty and student relationships, small classes and interdisciplinary learning.
“It has been a privilege to be a part of conversations with people who want to be a part of something so stunning and meaningful at Alma College,” said Janie Diels, interim provost. “We are so grateful for Greg Hatcher’s gift, which will not only support the transformative experiences that our students receive at Alma College, but also telegraph our values to all who walk through its doors.”
Construction on the Greg Hatcher Learning Commons began in early 2022 and is expected to be complete in early 2023. Future opening and dedication activities will be announced as details are finalized.
Follow along with a livestream of construction at the Alma College YouTube page and a blog at alma.edu/offices/facilities-and-service-management/learning-commons/.