Rhatigan Renewal update
Student center, WSU memories inspire donors’ gifts

The Rhatigan Student Center
The Rhatigan Student Center, once known as the Campus Activities Center, has been the heart of student activities for more than 50 years. It will soon undergo a $33 million renovation that is being funded by increased student fees and private donations.

Students past and present are well-acquainted with the Rhatigan Student Center, known as the heart or “living room” of Wichita State University. For more than five decades, it has been the hub of student activities. With the first article appearing in the Winter 2011 Horizon, the RSC, formerly the Campus Activities Center, will undergo a $33 million renovation that is being funded by increased student fees and private donations.

The WSU Foundation has a goal to raise 10 percent of the costs of the project to reduce, up front, the long-term debt incurred by the students. James Rhatigan, the student center namesake and consultant to the WSU Foundation, is spearheading the campaign and said that $600,000 has been raised to date. He also encouraged donors to take advantage of Kansas’ Higher Education Deferred Maintenance Tax Credit Program if their gifts are $5,000 or more.

Donors, Lora and Don ’88 Barry, and Larry Beamer and Debbie Haynes ’76, understand the RSC’s importance to students and Wichita State and stepped up to help support the renovation.

Lora and Don ’88 Barry

Lora and Don Barry
Lora and Don ’88 Barry

Lora and Don ’88 Barry have been active supporters of Wichita State for more than 20 years, giving to the Ulrich Museum and the WSU Biological Field Station, among other areas important to the university. The Barrys’ gift of $25,000 to the Rhatigan Renewal was made in honor of Lavona Spencer, WSU instructor and counselor, who worked with students with undeclared majors for 32 years until her retirement in 2003.

Don Barry began attending WSU in the 1970s, but became a financial advisor and left in 1981. Years later, in 1987, Barry was seated next to Spencer on an airplane from Wichita, Kan., to Dallas, Texas. He knew her well from his days at WSU. On that flight, she counseled Barry to finish school and earn his degree, which he did.

Debbie Haynes ’76  and Larry Beamer 

Debbie Haynes and Larry Beamer
Debbie Haynes ’76 and Larry Beamer

For more than 30 years, whether they have been cheering on Shocker men’s basketball or providing crucial support to the university, its faculty and students, Debbie Haynes ’76 and Larry Beamer have been steadfast in their support for Wichita State. Their recent gift of $75,000 to the Rhatigan Renewal is a reflection of the impact the university has had on their lives. As an undergraduate at WSU, Haynes was an influential student leader and spent much time inside the RSC as president of the Student Government Association.



For information about how you can contribute to the Rhatigan Renewal, contact Rhatigan at (316) 978-3846 or james.rhatigan@wichita.edu. More tax credit information can be found in this brochure, The Rhatigan Renewal: The Future is Ours!, or you can contact Patsy Selby, WSU Foundation vice president for finance and administrative services, at (316) 978-3810 or patsy.selby@wichita.edu.

Look for more about the Rhatigan Renewal and specifically about the donors associated with the Shirley Beggs Ballroom in the October issue of Horizon.

Connect With Us:

 Pinterest  Google Plus Instagram


Wichita State University Foundation

1845 Fairmount St., Wichita, KS 67260-0002
Phone: 316-978-3040 | Fax: 316-978-3277 foundation@wichita.edu

© 2014 Wichita State University Foundation

Wichita State University Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law.