Wichita State announced the largest cash gift in the university’s history on Wednesday.
Wichita oil producer Wayne Woolsey and his wife, Kay, are giving $10 million to help build a new home for the W. Frank Barton School of Business.
Another $2 million is being donated to Wichita State’s department of geology to support its petroleum geology program and field camp experiences for students.
In recognition of the gift, the 136,000-square-foot building that will be in the heart of WSU’s Innovation Campus will be named in honor of the couple.
A native of Texas, Wayne Woolsey, 87, came to Wichita in 1968 while working for Texaco. He left Texaco a year later and started his own company in 1970.
“I have been fortunate to find success in a field that I enjoy a great deal, and I view this gift as something that will help develop other successful entrepreneurs and business leaders,” Woolsey said in a prepared statement. “A great business school facility at Wichita State will strengthen our work force and our economy, and that is worth investing in.”
The new hall is a top priority in the WSU Foundation’s $250 million Shock the World campaign. The Woolsey gift brings the total campaign contributions to more than $230 million, said Elizabeth King president of the WSU Foundation.
It also elevates the amount raised for the business school project to $21.5 million. The hall is expected to cost about $50 million and university officials want to raise at least half that total through private contributions.
WSU hopes to break ground by the end of 2019.