WEST HAVEN, CONN. – Nov. 8, 2016 – President Steven H. Kaplan today announced that a state-of-the-art academic building, to be opened in 2019, will be named in honor of longtime University benefactors Samuel S. Bergami Jr. ’85 EMBA and Lois Bergami.
Their contribution will support the 40,000-square-foot Bergami Center for Science, Technology and Innovation that will house a makerspace, cutting-edge science classrooms, communications studios, advanced “smart” classrooms, an atrium/café, and space for multidisciplinary student and faculty collaboration.
“This building’s state-of-the-art science learning spaces, its technologically advanced ‘smart’ classrooms, and all of its additional pioneering features will provide an exceptional environment for our students to learn, create, and collaborate with each other,” Kaplan said. “Most importantly, it will provide even more opportunities for our students to develop the same forward-thinking mindset that Sam has demonstrated throughout his distinguished career. I am most grateful for Sam and Lois’s support, which will make this important initiative a reality.”
Kaplan said the building will play a pivotal role in enhancing the educational experience of University students. The project is expected to begin in the fall of 2017.
“The University of New Haven truly changes lives and improves our communities,” Sam Bergami said. “This is why we will continue to do everything we can to ensure that it is the strongest institution it can be. By supporting this university, we are investing in the potential and promise of its students. What better investment could there be?”
The Charger Challenge
The Bergami Center for Science, Technology and Innovation is the cornerstone of the University’s Charger Challenge, the comprehensive $100 million fundraising campaign launched last April.
The facility, to be built adjacent to Buckman Hall, which houses the Tagliatela College of Engineering, will serve as a primary point of contact for students from across the University interested in innovation and entrepreneurship. The building will be designed to help draw together resources from across the campus and to serve as a common space for students to develop and test ideas alongside their peers with mentorship from faculty, alumni and corporate partners.
The Bergamis are longtime supporters of the University of New Haven. On Saturday, Nov. 5, the University dedicated the Lois Evalyn Bergami Broadcast Media Center, which is home to its student-run radio station, WNHU 88.7 FM, in honor of Lois Bergami.
“Sam and I have long taken great pride in supporting the University of New Haven and in supporting the University’s talented and hardworking students,” Lois Bergami said. “We are especially pleased to help WNHU and all of the students associated with the station. Like the students before them – and those who will follow in their footsteps – we expect their futures will be bright.”
The Bergamis Have funded the Samuel S. Bergami Jr. Learning Center for Finance and Technology in Maxcy Hall; the Bergami Family Fitness Center in the Beckerman Recreation Center; and the Bergami Family Lecture Hall in the Henry C. Lee Institute of Forensic Science. Bergami Hall, a 66,000-square-foot facility that serves as a residence hall and houses administrative offices, is also named in their honor. They created the Bergami Family Summer Internship Program and endowed scholarships to help current and future generations of students. They also contributed to the Bergami and Pompea Graduate Center at the University’s Orange campus.
The University named Sam Bergami a Distinguished Alumnus in 2000, awarded him an honorary Doctor of Business degree in 2002 and presented him its President's Award in 2012.
“I am deeply grateful to Sam and Lois for all they do for the University of New Haven and for their unwavering belief in our mission and in the tremendous promise and potential of our students.” Kaplan said.
Founded on the campus of Yale University in 1920, the University of New Haven is a private, top-tier comprehensive institution recognized as a national leader in experiential education. The university enrolls nearly 5,000 undergraduates and approximately 1,900 graduate students.