The longer term College of Michigan residence corridor will probably be named in honor of a longtime campus chief who was devoted to serving to college students succeed.
The Board of Regents on 22 September renamed the constructing E. The roster voted to call it after Harper, a Vice President Emerita for Pupil Life who labored on the college for greater than 4 many years.
Will probably be the primary constructing on U-M’s campus to bear the title of a black girl.
The announcement got here as a shock to Harper, who thought she had been invited to attend the assembly to bid farewell to outgoing President Mary Sue Coleman.
Harper was vp of scholar life for 18 years earlier than retiring in 2019. He was broadly regarded amongst friends and college students as a heat, considerate and inclusive chief who labored tirelessly to help college students’ wants.
Coleman, Vice President and Secretary Sally Churchill, and Martino Harmon, Vice President of Pupil Life, wrote, “She frequently strives to enhance the scholar expertise by way of her advocacy and decision-making, making certain that college students are challenged. And discover the precise steadiness between help.” Harper for the dignity.
Harper’s far-reaching impression may be felt throughout campus. He was instrumental in increasing and refurbishing U-M’s residence corridor system and helped institute measures that promoted inclusivity and scholar welfare.
Harper led section two of the Complete Residential Residing Initiative, which resulted within the creation of the North Quad residential and academic complicated and the William Monroe Trotter Multicultural Heart. He additionally led efforts to forestall sexual misconduct and develop psychological well being assets.
His legacy may be seen in lots of different areas, together with gender-inclusive bogs and residential areas; Renovation of Michigan Union, Michigan League and leisure sports activities amenities; Prolonged stay-learning choices; and the Blavin Students Program, which helps college students raised in foster care.
Previous to changing into Vice President for Pupil Life, Harper’s different roles at UM included Affiliate Vice President and Senior Affiliate Vice President for Pupil Affairs and Dean of College students, Assistant to the Vice President of Tutorial Affairs and Assistant to the LSA Dean, and Director of Alternative. applications and complete examine programmes.
Coleman invited Harper to a gathering of the Board of Regents however didn’t inform her concerning the building-naming proposal.
Throughout his inaugural handle, Coleman mentioned that UM has a vibrant residence corridor system that can should be expanded within the coming years.
“We do not have particulars concerning the areas, designs or building schedules but,” she mentioned. “However we all know the next: that we wish a future residence corridor to honor a longtime campus chief.”
Coleman famous Harper’s a few years of service on the college. He additionally highlighted a few of his achievements.
“She was an unbelievable champion of the scholars and their experiences on campus,” she mentioned.
Coleman then sought the regents’ approval to call a future residence corridor after Harper. Alexander G. Folks gathered in Ruthven’s College Corridor applauded.
Regents Katherine White, Mark Bernstein and Denise Illich thanked Harper for her years of service and dedication to college students.
Bernstein mentioned, “I can not thanks sufficient for the service you will have rendered to this college, and to the numerous college students whose lives have been enriched by your work.”
Harper attended the assembly together with her husband, Charles. Tears welled up on listening to the announcement.
“I’ve no phrases to precise my deep appreciation for not solely this honor, however for what the college has executed for me so a few years in the past,” mentioned Harper, an alumnus of UM. “It modified the trajectory of my life.”