ELKINS, W.Va. (WBOY) – Davis & Elkins College received a large gift toward its Creating Home: It Takes a Village Campaign, which will improve campus housing.

Two existing residence halls will be renovated, and ground will be broken for the third residence hall, around April 2023. The three halls together will create The Freshman Village.

The college must raise $25 million through its capital campaign for the project. Davis & Elkins College President Chris Wood said the college is very pleased with the lead gift of $10 million from a man whose daughter attended the college in the 1980s, Jim McDonnell, a trustee of D&E.

“Without philanthropy, we can’t have quality education, particularly with private institutions, so we really do rely on people, particularly those who have graduated from here, who recognize the quality of the education they’ve received, we rely on them to give back so that that type of educational opportunity is available for students today, and indeed for generations to come,” said Wood. “It’s going to take our alumni and friends of the institution, that are large numbers of them, giving to complete and to push us over the finish line, and we’re looking forward to finishing this campaign in 2023, as we begin construction and complete our freshman village.”

You can make a donation to the capital campaign for the freshman village here.

Wood said a lead gift of this size is intended to encourage others to contribute to the capital campaign, which will help Davis & Elkins College continue to provide a quality higher education.

The McDonnell Center, a competitive gymnasium, is one of Jim’s earlier gifts. Wood said he has contributed upward of $60 million to the college.