Belmont University hosted a Topping Out ceremony on June 14 that involved putting the last beam in place on a significant campus construction project—the Jack C. Massey Center— estimated to be complete by fall 2023. The building has been named in honor of one of the greatest entrepreneurs and businessmen in American history and is being made possible thanks to a $15 million gift from Mr. Massey’s daughter, Barbara Massey Rogers, and the Jack C. Massey Foundation.
The late Jack C. Massey (1904-1990) and his family have collectively been among one of Belmont’s biggest benefactors, supporting Belmont’s efforts for decades and providing incredible examples for students across campus.
Beth Poe, Barbara Massey Rogers’ daughter and Massey’s granddaughter, spoke at the ceremony on behalf of her family. “My grandfather loved his family, community, city, nation and Belmont. He would be very excited about the prospect of this great, new building and the future opportunities it will bring to Belmont,” she said. “The word of God states the importance of building a foundation on the Lord, with Jesus Christ as the chief cornerstone. Belmont has laid this sure foundation. The Massey family prays that all who walk through this building continue to be living stones, pointing others to the grace of Jesus.”
The six-story building on 15th Avenue will house a variety of University teams—including the Belmont Data Collaborative, the Transformational Innovation Hub and the Cone Center for Entrepreneurship—all highlighting key aspects of Mr. Massey’s approach to business. The building will also incorporate technology to help share the Jack C. Massey story to inspire students, guests and future leaders across every potential field of study.
State-of-the-art collaboration workshops will provide spaces for students, faculty and staff to come together with the goal of using their business skills and expertise to solve complex problems. The Center will also be home to a new Welcome Center for the University and house its Admissions Team, becoming the University’s new front door.
In 1968, Massey challenged the community to build a business school at Belmont “that served Nashville.” Dean of Belmont’s College of Business Dr. Sarah Gardial said the new building is the quintessential piece of his influence on Belmont’s campus.
“This building is going to be the intersection between our campus, our programs, our students and faculty, and the community around us. We will be working on projects for and with community nonprofits, for profits and government organizations, and in fact, those projects are already underway,” said Gardial. “When I look at the building, I see not only the front door to the campus for our students and parents, but for the community to come in and partner with the Belmont community at the business school, and more broadly, to make this a more flourishing community. That’s what’s going to happen in this building, and I think Jack would be so proud of that.”
Gifts from Mr. Massey and his family over the years have helped Belmont establish its undergraduate and graduate business programs and built both the Massey Business Center–which houses the Jack C. Massey College of Business–and the Massey Performing Arts Center. In light of the new facility being built and named in his honor, the previously named Jack C. Massey Business Center, facing Wedgewood Avenue, will be renamed the Barbara Massey Rogers Center.