Fairfield University Receives $5 Million Gift
Fairfield University has received a gift of $5 million from an anonymous benefactor. University President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J., made the announcement October 3, at a meeting of Fairfield’s Board of Trustees.
“Gifts of this magnitude are extraordinary and transformational to an institution and we are extraordinarily grateful to the individual who made this commitment,” Father von Arx said in making the announcement. “Not only do they represent a clear commitment to and confidence in the University, but they provide momentum to our fundraising efforts that will ensure that Fairfield continues to provide the outstanding educational experience to our students for which we have long been known,”
According to the donor’s wishes, the gift is unrestricted, to be used for an institutional priority at the President’s discretion. Accordingly, the funds have been designated for the modernization and expansion of the Leslie C. Quick Jr. Recreation Complex on campus. The Rec-Plex, located in the center of campus, serves more than 95 percent of the student body, as well as many faculty and staff. It was built in 1979 and houses the swimming pool, Birkenstock field house, and fitness and weight areas that that support general recreation, intramural, and club sports as well as the varsity swimming and diving teams.
The gift is the second major donation that will contribute to moving forward the Rec-Plex project and is in response to a challenge gift last April by Fairfield University alumnus and member of the Board of Trustees, John C. Meditz ’70. Mr. Meditz gifted $10 million for the project with the hope that it would “encourage and inspire others to make exemplary donations.”
Father von Arx indicated that fundraising efforts for the project would continue along with the completion of construction documents to enable the project to move forward once the funding plan and resources are in place. A major addition to the building, combined with extensive renovations of existing spaces, will greatly expand fitness and weight-training space, provide additional multi-purpose rooms and spaces, include an indoor running/walking track, modernize floor surfaces for increased usage by intramural, club and varsity sports programs, air-condition the field house, and provide new, dedicated locker rooms for the varsity swimming and diving teams.