Brite Divinity School expands into new building

harrison(1)_rdax_250x173By Rick Waters
The TCU Magazine

Brite Divinity School recently opened its 24,000-square-foot W. Oliver and Nell A. Harrison Building with a prayer dedication ceremony.

The $15 million facility stands directly east of the seminary’s Jo Ann and Wayne Moore Building and includes classrooms, seminar rooms, a technology-enhanced preaching laboratory, faculty and administrative offices, and a large area for lectures, musical events and special dining functions.

The project took 18 months to build and followed a five-year fund-raising effort. A $1.5 million grant in August 2010 from the J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation, a Delaware nonprofit with offices in Tulsa, helped get the project started.

“It’s a challenge,” D. Newell Williams, Brite president said. “Many people who care about ministerial education helped make this possible.”

Williams said the seminary has outgrown the Moore building, which was built in 1952. When it was built, there were about 50 students and six faculty members. There are now 240 students and 23 faculty members.

The new building is named after Oliver Harrison, who served on the school’s board when it voted unanimously to admit African-American students.