$5 Million Gift Launches Library Campaign
September 29, 2015
Pantic Schumann Library - Wentworth
Douglas D. Schumann, AM ’64, and President Zorica Pantic
BOSTON -- Wentworth Institute of Technology has received a $5 million gift to help renovate its library—a major project that will include construction of common spaces for collaboration and interdisciplinary learning.
School officials said the renovation is part of an ongoing strategic plan to maximize the Wentworth experience for current and future generations of students.
The library gift, from Douglas D. Schumann, AM ’64, a Wentworth trustee emeritus and 2008 honorary degree recipient, was announced at a Sept. 29 campaign kickoff on the school’s Huntington Avenue campus. In honor of his support, the library is being named the Douglas D. Schumann Library & Learning Commons.
In an interview just before the announcement, Wentworth President Zorica Pantić called Schumann’s contribution “transformational and heartfelt.”
“We are all extremely grateful to Doug,” she said. “This gift will help us transform the existing library into a library of the future that will provide spaces for learning and interdisciplinary collaboration not only to the students of today but for the generations to come.”
At an estimated cost of $15 million, the renovation will begin in the spring of 2016. Wide-ranging upgrades will reflect contemporary trends in library design that place less emphasis on stacks of books and more on providing advanced, communal work spaces.
The Institute is launching a campaign to raise additional funds for the project. It has received other gifts for the renovation totaling $750,000 from donors including William Whelan, EEP ’63, whose service to Wentworth earned him an honorary degree from the Institute in 2003.
Those close to the library project and fundraising for it say there is tremendous excitement around the Schumann gift and renovation—a sense that members of the community are watching Wentworth’s future take hold.
“This is a gift in the truest sense of the word,” said Paula Sakey, vice president for Institutional Advancement. “Mr. Schumann’s generosity, coupled with commitments from other donors, will enrich the intellectual lives of countless students on this campus for decades to come.”
“The Douglas D. Schumann Library & Learning Commons will be an inspirational space—a place for students that is uniquely theirs; where they can engage with their peers and instructors; where they can explore and take ownership of their own learning; where they can make and create,” said Library Director Kevin Kidd.
Frederick Driscoll, dean of the College of Engineering and Technology, said the library project is one of the most important he’s seen in his 50 years on the Wentworth campus.
“You can’t overstate how much this means for the Institute’s academic life,” he said.
Schumann is the owner and founder of P-Q Controls Inc., a leading engineering services company that supplies the world's market of heavy duty joysticks and controls for the refuse, mining, forestry, marine, and construction industries, among others. Schumann has said his philanthropic work is rooted in the love and support he received from his parents—Dorothy "Dot" Dunlop Schumann and Charles "Chick" Frederick Schumann—and a desire to help young people who, growing up, may not have been as fortunate as he was.
He is also the benefactor for an Institute scholarship program, for an endowed faculty position, and the Douglas D. Schumann Fitness Center, which opened on the Wentworth campus in 2012.
The library project complements a long list of academic and physical enhancements on Wentworth’s campus in the decade since Pantić became president of the Institute in 2005, including—to cite a few—the opening of the new residence complex at 525 Huntington Ave.; the Altschuler Computer Center; the Gelfand Strength of Materials Labs; and the Center for Sciences and Biomedical Engineering.
- July 2, 2020—A 15-week academic schedule is planned with classes beginning on September 8.
- June 29, 2020—University professors and staff members discuss racial inequality and how race is addressed in academia as Wentworth takes steps to reflect, educate and act.
- June 29, 2020—Part II of our discussion with Nakisa Alborz, David Simpson, Alex Cabal, Rebecca Drossman and Aaron Carpenter on the topic of race.