The order of nuns who founded Newman University 80 years ago has given $2.5 million to the Catholic university, school officials announced Tuesday.
President Noreen Carrocci announced the gift from the Adorers of the Blood of Christ.
The money will help pay for science and health care initiatives, said Kelly Snedden, a university spokeswoman. Those initiatives include a proposed new science facility.
“Financially we are strong, Newman is stronger than it’s ever been, so this gift does not come from need,” Carrocci said. “It comes from their desire to help us with enhancements. They see our vision for the future and want to support that.”
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Newman produces teachers, nurses, and graduates trained in technology, among other professionals. In recent years the university has put an increased emphasis on the teaching of science and health. Seven years ago, Carrocci said, 44 percent of the graduates earned degrees in the sciences, nursing or allied health. That has grown to 53 percent now, she said. Of the 3,700 students who take classes there, 1,400 are high school students taking college courses, she said.
The Adorers were founded 180 years ago. Newman, a Catholic school, is the only university the order founded, Carrocci said. But she said they do much good all over the world, including in other parts of Wichita.
At the Center of Hope, the order gives money and tries to help families stay out of homelessness. The order runs a school and clinics for people in Guatemala, and in Arizona among the Navaho, she said. Most of the ministries help the disadvantaged, especially women and children, she said.
The money from the Adorers comes from their endowment. “For them it is a real sacrifice, and we appreciate it,” Carrocci said.
It will be used over five years, she said.
“The purpose of our university is to ‘empower graduates to transform society,’ said Barbara Hudock, a leader of the Adorers, in a prepared statement. “The Adorers are proud to offer what support we can.”