WSU celebrates $1.5M donation

Wright State University (WSU) said it will use a newly pledged donation of $1.5 million to help continue the consolidation of student services on campus.

WSU alumna Shirley Berry and her husband, John, have pledged $1.5 million to the university, WSU announced Wednesday. The money will go to “student success initiatives,” supporting “student success programming and operations in the university’s Student Success Center,” the university said in a release.

The center, which opened last year, features “high-tech, active-learning” classrooms, along with writing and math support labs, the university said. Before the center opened, such services and resources were all over campus, WSU said.

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In acknowledgement of the donation, the university said it will name an auditorium in the center the “John and Shirley (’77) Berry Auditorium.”

“We are so grateful to John and Shirley for their incredibly generous support of our students,” Wright State President David Hopkins said in the university’s announcement. “They clearly share our commitment to helping every Wright State student succeed.”

“I’m just real proud that we can do this for Wright State,” Shirley Berry said in the same release. “It makes a big difference in people’s lives whether they have a degree or not.”

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She graduated from Wright State in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in education.

“Wright State’s really unique with their programs to help students graduate,” said John Berry, retired president of the Berry Co. “Some of the students who go to Wright State might not be as prepared as other students. Having a Student Success Center is very, very meaningful.”

WSU said Berry joins 14 other Wright State alumni who have contributed at least $1 million to the university’s “Rise Shine” fundraising campaign. In all, the campaign has raised more than $160 million, the university said.

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