The gift from the foundation will be used to establish a permanent endowment benefiting arts students, faculty, and community outreach programs. In recognition of the gift, the university will rename the college the Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts, making it the first college at UH named after a former student and the first named after a woman. Katherine McGovern, the wife of the late John P. McGovern, studied art and design at UH.
The gift was announced in conjunction with the public launch of the university's a $1 billion capital campaign, the most ambitious in its ninety-year history. With the McGovern gift, UH has received gifts and commitments totaling $680 million.
"The arts play a very vital role in our society as artists convey their interpretations of beauty, performance, and concept to the viewer, often opening minds to new appreciations of the world around us," said McGovern. "I would like the McGovern College of the Arts to be known for its commitment to excellence in the teaching, nurturing, and support of all of its students, with the hope that those same students will use their talents to give back to the college and the City of Houston."