Co-Rec to be named after Córdova - Purdue Exponent: Campus

Co-Rec to be named after Córdova

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Posted: Monday, July 16, 2012 12:10 pm | Updated: 10:37 am, Wed Jul 18, 2012.

The Board of Trustees are scheduled to vote to name the Recreational Sports Center after former president France Córdova at Friday's meeting.

Córdova worked to fund the $98 million renovation project of the center. The building project is expected to be completed early in the fall semester.

The building will have her name over both entrances, the front and the back and there will also be a plaque of Córdova in the reception area. She was presented with this gift from the Trustees at one of the celebrations in her honor.

"It's a beautiful figure; they gave (a rendering) to me on a great big board," Córdova said. "I have it at home."

Perhaps the most personalized aspect of the building named in her honor will be the story board located inside telling the timeline of how the renovations came to be, using the perspectives of the students who helped this vision come to life.

"There will also be a tribute to students," Córdova said. "The students have all written in their stories and I have those and we're making kind of a story book kind of thing for display ... subsequent student generations just won't know (this) story, so we wanted to put that story in there too and do it a clever way with a screen that shows their testimony and pictures."

Chris Sigurdson, assistant vice president of external relations, said this has been named in her honor because she has done what no president before her had done.

"Students have been trying to get this done for years, but no president at Purdue would touch it until France," he said. "It was a $98 million renovation."

As an explanation, Córdova said she needed to use clever monetary strategies and the help of student leaders.

"They (past presidents) just didn't know how to finance it. Even after we came up with the plan (the students) still had to get all the legislators in there and we had people like Nathan Welch and Adam Klein and the two Erics that were student body presidents. It was just a huge effort that they put into this."

In October, Córdova plans to return with her husband, Chris Foster, to do a symbolic first climb on the sports center's rock climbing wall at the official grand opening. She's also invited the student leaders to come to the opening to see their goal fully complete.

"Oct. 12 they will have the official unveiling, sort of the grand opening even though it will be technically open before that," she said. "That's homecoming weekend and so we've been invited to come for that and for the game all ... I've invited all the past student body presidents under me because they worked so hard at this and the Trustees worked very hard, there was so much work in getting this approved."

The Exponent will continue to follow this story.

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