By Reilly Wright, Photo Editor
The Gillespie Honors House, Ohio Wesleyan’s newest $2 million campus addition, houses 27 honors students, a variety of educational events and countless opportunities.
Located at 81 Oak Hill Ave., the house opened in August to sophomores, juniors and seniors part of the Leland F. and Helen Schubert Honors Program, who applied in the spring to reside in the new house.
The Gillespie Honors House was officially dedicated Thursday Oct. 19 during Ohio Wesleyan’s 2017 Homecoming and Family Weekend. President Rock Jones, Honors Program Director Amy McClure and the Gillespies were in attendance to speak at the crowded dedication.
The Gillespie Honors House moderator, junior Cindy Huynh, also spoke at the event showing her support for the house and its donors. As moderator, she works with housemates and the Honors Board to plan and host events at the spacious house.
“I believe that the Honors House is very unique and different from the other themed houses,” Huynh said. “We all have different backgrounds, perspectives and passions, which allows us to learn from each other. We all motivate and support each other to be the best that we can in order to reach our academic goals and aspirations.”
The student residence was built with funding from alumni Robert W. Gillespie ‘66, a key player in Cleveland banking industries, and his wife, Ann L. Wible Gillespie ‘67.
Both are still deeply involved in the university. Ann is a strong legacy, and Robert is an OWU Life Trustee and a board member of University Advancement, Finance and Operations, and Investments committees. Both are also members of the Founders’ Circle for their more than $1 million contribution and were involved in their 50th class reunions.
“Mr. and Mrs. Gillespie and their family are very passionate about students and their experience here at OWU,” Huynh said. “Their vision was to build and cultivate a community with the university’s best and brightest minds from now and for many more generations.”
In addition to their $2 million contribution for the house, their gift included another $500,000 for the Ann Wible Gillespie Endowed Scholarship, the Jack Dawson Scholarship and the Ohio Wesleyan Fund to sponsor campus operations.
In Ann’s dedication speech, she told of her grandson questioning their major donation to the university when there were programs such as cancer research to support.
“I think I said something like ‘You know, it seems to me that all real progress starts with education … for the most part, this is the core for getting our country and the world where it needs to be,’” Robert said.