Purdue dedicates students’ Krach Leadership Center

September 27, 2014  


Keith Krach

Keith Krach, a Purdue graduate and former trustee, speaks at the dedication ceremony for the student leadership development center named in his honor. (Purdue University photo/John Underwood)

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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - On Saturday (Sept. 27) Purdue University dedicated the Krach Leadership Center, a key resource to help students succeed inside and outside the classroom so they can earn their degrees on time and develop leadership skills that will serve them through their lives.

“The Gallup-Purdue Index shows how critical the student experience is beyond the classroom and through the campus activities in which students engage,” said Purdue President Mitch Daniels. “A student excellence and leadership center demonstrates Purdue’s commitment to that entire experience. Students will be able to find resources and support to develop and enhance their leadership skills, which will contribute to their success in the classroom as well.”

The Gallup-Purdue Index is an survey of college graduates to learn how their college experiences affected their careers and lives.

This summer, Purdue’s Board of Trustees approved naming the 81,500-gross-square-foot facility in honor of Keith Krach for his business, philanthropic and university leadership. He is the board’s former chairman and a Purdue alumnus. In addition to various academic and athletic contributions to Purdue, Krach and his wife, Metta, gave $10 million toward the building’s construction.

“Leadership isn’t a title. It is an array of actions, traits and values aligned to make a positive difference in people’s lives,” said Keith Krach, who earned an industrial engineering degree from Purdue in 1979 and an MBA from Harvard in 1981. “Respect. Integrity. Courage. Ambition. Teamwork. It is my fervent hope that the Krach Leadership Center will stand as a home for active exploration and participation where student success organizations and programs will inspire every Purdue student to develop his or her unique leadership skills. We are proud our investment will provide this environment to help launch tomorrow’s leaders into lives of passion, purpose, success and fulfillment.”

Krach is currently the chairman and CEO of DocuSign in San Francisco, former chairman of the board for Angie's List, and the founder and former CEO of Ariba. He served on the Purdue Board of Trustees from 2007-2013 and as its chairman for two terms.

Krach Leadership Center

The Krach Leadership Center will house student resources including academic help, leadership development programs and student organization meeting space.  (Purdue University photo/Charles Jischke)

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The Krach Leadership Center houses student resources including academic help, leadership development programs and student organization meeting space. Its location, along Third Street, also is in the heart of the campus’ student success corridor, where students live and study. The area includes residence halls to the west, as well as the Córdova Recreational Sports Center, dining courts, Black Cultural Center, fraternity and sorority houses, and the new Third Street Suites located between Wiley and Windsor residence halls.

“The Krach Leadership Center really takes student leadership at Purdue to the next level,” said Bobby Haddix, president of Purdue Student Government and a senior in industrial engineering from Ossian, Indiana. “In one building, students now have nearly every resource they need to be successful students and leaders on campus. The space also provides incredible opportunities for students to collaborate with each other as we all work to accomplish our big dreams. I cannot wait to see all the great ideas that come out of this building this year and far into the future."

The fourth floor houses the office of Student Success, which operates a variety of programming to help support student retention and on-time graduation.

These programs include:

* Boiler Gold Rush, the fall orientation program for first-year and transfer students.

* Learning Communities, a program in which groups of 20-30 students take two or three courses together and often live in the same residence hall.

* Purdue Promise, the program that supports low-income, first-generation college students through required courses, learning communities, peer mentoring and individual support from professional staff.

* Supplemental Instruction, an academic assistance program that offers students regularly scheduled peer-led study sessions.

“Purdue has high expectations for its students, and we know the students have high expectations about their campus experience,” said Jared Tippets, director of Student Success and Purdue’s Foundations of Excellence. “Our message to students is graduate in four years, maintain a 3.0 GPA, study two hours per class and commit to one leadership activity. The programs we offer create a partnership with students so they can achieve this success, and this new facility brings us together with the variety of campus resources working toward that common goal.”

The third floor houses offices and meeting space for the Business Office for Student Organizations, Civic Engagement and Leadership Development, Horizons, and Student Activities and Organizations. On the second floor is Fraternity, Sorority, Cooperative Life; Purdue Student Government; and a variety of student organizations. The building's first floor is designed to be a public space between work and home for faculty, staff and students to meet and interact.

“There are a variety of opportunities and activities for students to choose from, and this new central location helps support these student organizations,” said Martia King, interim associate dean of students of activities and organizations. “It’s designed to encourage and support community, while building on the campus experience.”

Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics also was a key partner in this project, contributing $12 million over six years through Big Ten Network revenue toward the facility's total cost. Also, Purdue is currently seeking LEED certification for the Krach Leadership Center.

Writer: Amy Patterson Neubert, 765-494-9723, apatterson@purdue.edu

Sources:  Mitch Daniels, president@purdue.edu

Jared Tippets, 765-494-2451, jtippets@purdue.edu

Martia King, 765-494-1231, mbrawner@purdue.edu

Note to Journalists: Video B-roll is available for download at ftp://news69.uns.purdue.edu/Public/Krach Leadership Center.

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