From the Archives – Famous Buildings in Thunderbird

J.T. Tai building

 The J.T. Tai building was originally known as the International Studies (IS) building. It was completed in 1991 as a faculty offices building for the International Studies Department.  In the early 2000s the building housed the Garvin Center for Cultures and Languages of Global Business and became popularly called the Garvin Center building.  However, it was formally named The J.T. Tai Building for Global Studies in 2012.  The naming of the J.T. Tai building was the result of a multi-million dollar gift from the J.T. Tai Co. Foundation led by Thunderbird Trustee Emeritus, F. Richard Hsu. Hsu, a Chinese pilot who trained in Arizona during World War II, and returned to Arizona to live in the 1990s.

F. Richard Hsu (left) visits J.T. Tai Building with the Interim Thunderbird President Barbara Barrett at the time of the naming.

In his own words – “The best thing I can do for the country and the world is to support Thunderbird, a school that trains future leaders who bring peace and prosperity to the world.”

The renamed J.T. Tai Building now is a faculty office building.

 

F. Richard Hsu (left) visits J.T. Tai Building with the Interim Thunderbird  President Barbara Barrett
F. Richard Hsu (left) visits J.T. Tai Building with the Interim Thunderbird President Barbara Barrett

 

Talley Building

Talley Building Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives
Talley Building
Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives

The Talley building is named after Trustee, Franz G. Talley. This building was completed on May 31, 1979. It has housed various departments over the years including the CMC, Human Resources, IT, Dining Services, Travel, Communications, and Marketing. During 1978 and 1979, the Talley building served as the career services center. When the CMC moved to it’s new location in 1998, the Talley Building became the new home of Human Resources and Information and Instructional Technology departments.

 

Talley Building Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives
Talley Building
Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives

In the 1979 Spring edition of Thunderbird magazine it was mentioned that “the Talley Career Services Building offers well furnished private interview rooms, recruiters’ lounge, informal patio lunches with faculty and administration and is operated by the dedicated and friendly placement staff.” During the time of President Voris, the Talley building received it’s major overhaul.

 

Voris Building

The William Voris Modern Languages Building was completed July 24, 1987 and named after the School’s 7th President – Dr. William Voris. The building was made possible by a generous donation from Trustee George F. Getz, Jr.

 

Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives
Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives

The 1987 Fall edition of Thunderbird Magazine reviews the Modern Languages Building as the first of three faculty office centers to be completed as a part of President Voris’ major campus new look effort. The 10,971 square-foot center was begun on October 3,1986, and finished on schedule, although it took a few more weeks for all the furniture to arrive. The facility was designed so that most of the offices have a window and all doors open onto a central hallway.

 

President William Voris with Frank Snell Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives
President William Voris with Frank Snell
Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives

There is a conference room for department meetings, two research rooms where student assistants may work, a computer room and a kitchen area – all major additions to the offices which were formerly located in two separate areas. Dr. Marshall Geer, then Vice President for Academic Affairs, noted that the new facility promotes interaction among the language professors and facilitates research. These facilities were instrumental in attracting and retaining quality faculty as they provide tangible evidence of the importance of these individuals to the institution.

 

During the ’40s and ’50s, languages were the cornerstone of the Thunderbird program, so choosing this faculty office center to be built first, was a way to reaffirm the importance of language instruction. Dr. Geer stated, “Language symbolizes Thunderbird. It is what sets us apart from other business schools.”

 

Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives
Courtesy: Thunderbird Archives

“This is the best thing to happen to the modern language department in the 16 years I’ve been here. I could stay here all day, do my work and enjoy it. The atmosphere is so conducive to studying.” says Clifford Call, Associate Professor of Spanish and Director of executive language programs

 

 

 

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