Marymount receives $3 million gift for new construction

Marymount University in Arlington has received a record $3 million gift toward the construction of its planned 26th Street project from Preston C. Caruthers, a prominent Northern Virginia businessman and community leader.

Caruthers is chairman of Carfam II Associates, L.P., a real estate development firm headquartered in Arlington. He is also a longtime supporter of Marymount, having been involved with the institution since the mid-1960s as a friend and advisor to three of its presidents. His commitment for the 26th Street project represents the largest single gift from an individual in the university's history.

Marymount's 26th Street project, approved by the Arlington County Board of Supervisors in July 2007, is a planned multi-purpose development on the site of a current surface parking lot owned by the university at the intersection of 26th Street, Old Dominion Drive and Yorktown Boulevard.

The project will include an academic building focused on science and health science, a residence hall providing suite-style accommodations for 230 students and attractive outdoor spaces, all built over underground parking.

In recognition of Caruthers' generous support, the project's academic building, which will house classrooms, lecture halls, faculty offices and laboratories, will be named Caruthers Hall.

"The 26th Street project responds directly to our most critical needs," said Marymount President James E. Bundschuh. "These new facilities will help us to meet the increasing demand for campus housing, significantly enhance instruction in several key academic programs and address the parking challenges that we have faced for several years.

"This project represents a transformational moment for Marymount University; it will really take us to the next level of excellence and distinction," Bundschuh said. "Yet this is not the first milestone in Marymount's history and, looking back, I realize that Preston Caruthers was right there with us during all of this institution's previous moments of transition and transformation. Preston understands Marymount's educational mission; he supports our commitment to academic excellence and to helping each student achieve his or her potential. Preston Caruthers has always been a great leader within the Arlington community and a great friend to Marymount University. We are grateful for his unfailing and generous support."

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2008