The Belmont map will, again, need to be updated as the upperclassmen residence, Two Oaks, has been re-named Russell Hall. This change comes in wake of a $4 million donation made by Joe and Anne Russell to the Bridges to Belmont program.
“With this gift they’ve made such a clear difference in the lives of these students and also demonstrated their commitment to higher education,” university President Bob Fisher said.
Bridges to Belmont is a program providing full tuition to inner-city Nashville students in the hopes they can receive a college education regardless of their socioeconomic upbringing.
“Bridges to Belmont’s mission is to provide an environment of support through services that affords Bridges Scholars a successful transition from high school to Belmont University,” according to the Belmont University website. “The program seeks to challenge, support and nurture the academic, personal and spiritual growth of the Bridges Scholars.
This program not only reflects Belmont’s desire to serve the community but also echoes Russell’s personal experience. A first-generation college student, Russell’s parents instilled in him the importance of a college education, emphasizing the importance of education and the opportunities that come with it.
“It wasn’t a matter of, ‘Are you going?’ it’s like, ‘Where are you going to college?’” said Fisher.
The building is named in honor of Russell’s parents and the legacy of commitment to education they left behind. This building, like many others around campus, are named to commemorate people who have exemplified a high standard of education Belmont wishes to uphold.
“I hope our students here will realize that there are people who maybe didn’t even go to school here, who are so committed to you and to your success,” said Fisher.
Article and photo by Kelby Bibler.