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Higher Education

University Center for the Arts

In 1996, Colorado State University purchased the old Fort Collins High School Building, a classic building of great historic value to the community. There the University Center for the Arts will become a reality with 100,000 square feet of classroom space and new performance venues, including two theatres, a recital hall and a 550 seat concert hall. The University Center for the Arts will give performing and cultural artists from C.S.U. and the community unprecedented opportunities to learn, create and perform, bringing a new dimension of aesthetic enrichment to the entire community.

In 2004, the foundation paid the last of two installments of a $2,000,000 pledge for the construction of the Edna Rizley Griffin Concert Hall. This beautiful concert hall opened May, 2004, with state-of-the-art acoustics and furnishings in keeping with the motto of the Center, "to inspire the human spirit"

Griffin Scholars

A scholarship program was established in 1994 that now provides financial assistance of $5,000 each semester to selected students who have received an associate degree from a community or junior college and who expect to receive a baccalaureate degree in no more than four semesters. The scholarships are available only to students who qualify for resident tuition and enroll at Colorado State University, the University of Northern Colorado or the University of Wyoming.

Evaluation of applicants is based on scholarship, citizenship, work history and obstacles they have overcome (financial and otherwise) to achieve their educational goals. The blue ribbon committee comprised of professional educators and community leaders reviews the applications, interviews the finalists and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors. As a result, seven awards were made to "Griffin Scholars" for the 2013-2014 academic year. These students joined eight "Griffin Scholars" from the previous year. Total support of these outstanding young citizens has aggregated $2,510,864 since the inception of the program.

Members of the Scholarship Committee declined compensation for their services. Instead, $500 grants were made by the foundation to charities of their choice. Volunteer members of the committee include C. William Herzog, Dr. Dorothy Horrell, Brownie McGraw, Jerry Rizley, Jean Lamson Spencer and David L. Wood. Carol B. Wood serves as the program director.

At the request of the volunteer members of the committee contributions aggregating $2,000 were made to the following charities in 2014;

The center for family Outreach
Poudre Valley Hospital Cancer Center
Community Foundation of Northern Colorado
Project Self-Sufficiency
CSUF - (Fum McGraw)
Red Rocks Community College
Fort Collins Museum of Discovery

CSU Computer Science Building

In 2008, the Griffin Foundation pledged $500,000 toward the expense of equipping and furnishing the new computer science building on the Colorado State University Campus. The computer labs are open to all students 24-7. CSU has experienced tremendous demand for the computer science and CIS curriculum. The new state-of-the-art building replaces classrooms that were inadequate for the demands of this expanding program. The pledge was completed in 2012.

CSU Early Childhood Center (ECC)

In 2011, the Griffin Foundation pledged $100,000 as a lead gift to assist the College of Health and Human Sciences at CSU to restore and remodel the Washington Elementary School (1919) Gym and Community Room. The gym will provide opportunity for large-motor individual and group activities. In addition, the space offers opportunity for community events such as rental space for the boy scouts or other community programming. This pledge was completed in 2013

Poudre River Library Trust

The Griffin Foundation donated $15,000 to the Community Room expansion at the Main Library in 2012 and an additional $15,000 in 2013. The first installment complemented the basic remodel and provided for additional features that will transform the project. The Community Room has the proper sound and media system, appropriate furniture, lighting and space so that it can be used by various groups for public performances, lectures and educational programs. The second installment provided major funding for a performance amphitheater adjoining the library.

CSU College of Business - Rockwell Hall - West Expansion

The Griffin Foundation pledged $300,000 in 2011 toward the furnishing of a large 75-seat auditorium style case teaching room in the Rockwell Hall-West addition to the CSU College of Business to accommodate the high demand for business courses, new degree programs and the increased need for new and diverse technology. This room is filled with state-of-the-art technology, which includes a Financial Data Lab outfitted with terminals, three student forums, and five team breakout rooms. It has the ability to capture both audio and video content that can be delivered around the globe to CSU's over 1200 Distance MBA students. This pledge was finalized in 2013.

Fort Collins Museum of Discovery

The Fort Collins Museum and the Discovery Science Center combined efforts to build a beautiful new facility which includes a Digital Dome Theater - a 360 degree immersive experience combining state-of-the-art high resolution digital projection and amazing surround sound to take you to places you could never imagine. The center is highly functional and has already become a community icon. The Griffin Foundation pledged $500,000 toward its construction. The gift was recognized by the naming of the Griffin Piano Café which is now the home of the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair Burly Maple grand piano.