November 07, 2006

Case Western Reserve University's Mandel Center constructs new building for educating nonprofit leaders

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The Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Case Western Reserve University—one of the first programs in the country with a primary focus on educating nonprofit management leaders—reached another milestone as it begins an $11 million project to build its new center on Bellflower Road and becomes the first center of its kind with its own freestanding building.

A generous gift from the Mandel Family Foundation has supported the building of the two-story structure that was designed by Kallmann, McKinnell & Wood Architects, Inc. in collaboration with Case's Office of Campus Planning, the donors and the Mandel Center. The construction management team of Albert M. Higley Company and WF Group, a minority business enterprise, continues Case's commitment to supplier diversity.

University Architect Margaret Carney describes the Center's design as the physical representation of the Center's mission and commitment to its students, faculty, alumni and the nonprofit community. The design character was inspired by donor Mort Mandel's desire to create a special place of "quiet elegance" that would also add to the quality of the campus environment.

"The new building represents a tremendous step forward for the Mandel Center," said Susan Lajoie Eagan, Ph.D., executive director of the Mandel Center. "It also is representative of the stature the Mandel Center has as a leading national program. We are deeply grateful to the Mandel family for its generosity and sustained commitment to the Center."

According to Eagan, the new building will offer expanded opportunities for scholarly exchanges, as well as graduate education and executive education locally, nationally and internationally through onsite and distance learning classes. The Mandel Center's new home will also provide a place to develop innovations in nonprofit leadership and management.

Students in the Master of Nonprofit Organizations (MNO) and Certificate in Nonprofit Management (CNM) programs will have a place to call their own in the new facility after they move from rented space in the Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center on Euclid Avenue.

The first floor of the new building will include a large lecture hall, meeting rooms, classrooms, kitchen facilities and a large student lounge that fronts on a courtyard. The second floor will have faculty and staff offices, staff lounge and working and meeting rooms.

"This building is a vision and dream come true for the Mandel brothers—Jack, Joseph and Morton," stated Mort Mandel about the foundation's desire to continuing their support of the Mandel Center's mission.

"Twenty years ago, the intense commitment to improve the leadership skills of nonprofit leaders was not there," said Mandel. "We felt there was a vacuum in nonprofit management education. Running a nonprofit is different from running IBM."

The Mandel Center was a novel idea in 1984 when Case's Board of Trustees established it.

As an innovator in nonprofit management education, the Mandel Center draws on the strengths of the university faculty from the Weatherhead School of Management, the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, the School of Law and the College of Arts and Sciences.

The Center is also home to the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council, a prestigious national membership association comprised of academic centers at accredited colleges and universities that focus on the study of nonprofit organizations. The Center also houses and staffs one of the leading academic journals in the field, Nonprofit Management & Leadership, a quarterly publication.

"The new building makes a statement that Case Western Reserve University is making a real commitment to providing the best facility as a working tool for the Mandel Center's purpose and cause," said Mandel.

Story by Susan Griffith, 216.368.1004.

Posted by: Heidi Cool, November 7, 2006 02:33 PM | News Topics: Events, HeadlinesMain, Philanthropy, Provost Initiatives

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