TU Receives $3 Million Mabee Foundation Challenge Grant

Tuesday, December 01, 1998

Published on 12/1/98

The University of Tulsa has received a $3 million challenge grant from The J.E. and L.E Mabee Foundation toward the construction of the Legal Information Center, a 28,000 square foot, three-story addition to the College of Law.

The $11.6 million Legal Information Center will feature high-tech resources, expanded meeting spaces and “smart” classrooms according to Martin H. Belsky, dean of the College of Law. Belsky describes the new center as a “state-of-the-art facility” providing access to the multitude of traditional, digital, and on-line legal resources.

“The Legal Information Center will be not only the intellectual core of the college, but also a community resource for law-related information. It will serve our law students, faculty and alumni, but also students from other disciplines, local attorneys and judges, other professionals, scientists, community leaders and interested citizens,” adds Belsky.

“The foundation is pleased to assist TU and the College of Law with a challenge grant toward the Legal Information Center,” says John H. Conway, executive director of The J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation. “We believe completion of the center will be a transformational step toward the future of one of the region’s most distinguished private law schools.”

Fundraising efforts for the Legal Information Center is part TU’s Campus Master Plan Phase II, a plan to develop a university community which supports and enriches the lives of TU students. TU will receive the Mabee Challenge Grant upon completion of its Phase II fundraising campaign, for which $8.3 million needed to reach the total goal of $23 million.

The site of the LIC is being prepared. A formal groundbreaking ceremony will be scheduled in early 1999. Designed by the Hillier Group of Princeton, N.J., the facility has been described as the synthesis of traditional and virtual library and will feature:

• more than 200 individual “wired” study carrels and tables;

• new offices for the college’s six certificate programs: Health Law; Native

American Law; Resources, Energy and Environmental Law; Alternative Dispute

Resolution; International and Comparative Law; and Public Policy and Regulation;

• a high profile suite for the Office of Alumni Relations;

• library administration space and multimedia services office;

• a two-story vaulted space in the center of the addition featuring richly appointed furnishings, serving as the main reading room;

• additional compact shelving, permitting the holdings to nearly double;

• renovations to the present basement level library of John Rogers Hall;

• work spaces for the college’s journals: the Tulsa Law Journal, the Tulsa Journal of Comparative and International Law, the Energy Law Journal, and Natural Resources Law – The Year in Review.;

• Student lounges, jury room and judges’ chambers;

• Innovative tools for collecting and disseminating legal information, including new CD-ROM collections, more Internet access, LEXIS-NEXIS and WESTLAW. The facility, which will expand the library space by more than 50 percent, will be located on the southwest corner of John Rogers Hall, between Gary and Florence Avenues on East Fourth Place. Construction, which is being coordinated by (contracting firm here) is scheduled for completion in January of 2000.

“Over the years, gifts from The Mabee Foundation have profoundly impacted the quality of student life at TU,” says Belsky. “On behalf of the College of Law, I want to thank the foundation for its generous support of our students and programs. This gift reflects the importance of the law school’s impact in the broader community.

“Realization of the Legal Information Center will allow the college not only to enhance its reputation for outstanding teaching, scholarship and community service, but will also serve as a catalyst for recognition as a pre-eminent regional center of excellence for legal education in the 21st Century,” adds Belsky.