Clough Named President Emeritus of Georgia Tech

Groundbreaking ceremony held for Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons

Georgia Tech alumnus and former President G. Wayne Clough returned to the campus as part of the groundbreaking for the Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons (CULC). During the ceremony, President Bud Peterson and University System of Georgia Chancellor Erroll B. Davis Jr. presented to Clough a proclamation declaring him President Emeritus of the Georgia Institute of Technology.

CULC Groundbreaking 2
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Donors, alumni, Regents of the University System of Georgia and others attend the groundbreaking of the Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons on April 5.

"G. Wayne Clough is regarded as a truly transformative president," Davis said. "But above all of that, he is a teacher and an educator. He had an uncommon passion for the education of undergraduate students here at Tech. This new Learning Commons will be a legacy—the bricks-and-mortar legacy of Dr. G. Wayne Clough."

After receiving the proclamation, Clough said what a pleasure it was to return to campus. "I spent two significant portions of my life here, once as a student, and once as the president. As the first alumnus to be president, I was privileged to have a unique perspective of Georgia Tech. I often met other alumni, and it wasn't unusual to hear from them that they did not enjoy the experience."

"I had this near-radical idea that Georgia Tech should be a place that not only challenged students, but one that also was dedicated to the idea that we wanted them to be successful," Clough said. "I was convinced both objectives could be achieved while allowing students and faculty to have fun along the way."

Peterson spoke about the building's genesis, initially begun as an idea 12 years ago.

"We are indebted to the General Assembly and the Governor for a tremendous state investment," Peterson said. "The people of Georgia Tech are very grateful to Chancellor Erroll Davis and the Board of Regents for making this project a priority several years ago, and for having the foresight to envision the transformation that this facility will have on the way Georgia Tech teaches and supports undergraduate students."

"We would not be standing here today were it not for the partnership of a number of people who believe in Georgia Tech and are willing to invest in its future," Peterson said. "Complementing the $60 million investment of the state is an additional investment from private philanthropy.  We are very grateful to a number of individuals and organizations. The list of donors to the project is long and would take us all afternoon. That’s a nice problem to have."

"We can imagine a time next year when students will be coming and going, benefitting from modern science laboratories, technologically advanced classrooms, and interactive learning experiences in an open and inviting environment."