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University of the Cumberlands Receives $1 Million Gift for Science Building


Dr. Jim Taylor presents the Honorary Doctor of Laws degree to Marion C. Forcht at University of the Cumberlands just before being surprised by Mrs. Forcht’s $1 million gift from Forcht Group of Kentucky and Forcht Bank NA.

Williamsburg, Ky. – When Dr. Jim Taylor of University of the Cumberlands presented Marion C. Forcht the Honorary Doctor of Laws degree on April 21, during the University’s annual Honors Day, he did not expect to receive something in return—especially a gift of one million dollars for the new Regina and Ward Correll Science Building, now under construction on the Williamsburg campus.

The new science building complex at University of the Cumberlands will consist of the current science building, which received extensive renovations in 2005, and the new building with its technology-equipped classrooms, lecture halls and office space, resulting in a 78,000 square-foot center for scientific studies. The eight million-dollar project is expected to be completed and ready for classes by the beginning of the 2008-09 spring semester.

Forcht, of Corbin, received the honorary degree from Cumberlands in recognition of her many business, community and philanthropic achievements. As she accepted the award, Forcht expressed her respect and admiration for University of the Cumberlands, saying, “It stands up for what it believes.” Then, she surprised Taylor with a check on behalf of the Forcht family and Forcht Group of Kentucky, of which she is controlling co-owner, along with her husband, Terry E. Forcht. “This gift is to help [Cumberlands] grow and stand and do all the things it has always done,” she said.

Forcht Group of Kentucky is comprised of 94 separate companies, employing more than 2,100 people, as well as Forcht Bank NA, which possesses assets of more than 1 billion dollars, making it one of the top ten banking holding companies in Kentucky.

Taylor admitted to being “speechless,” but he did say that what students pay at Cumberlands does not begin to cover the cost of educating them. “Without friends like you (the Forchts), I don’t know what we would do. May God bless you,” said Taylor.

University of the Cumberlands, located in Williamsburg, Kentucky, is a private liberal arts college in its 119th year of operation. Cumberlands offers four undergraduate degrees in 37 major fields of study, 30 minors and nine pre-professional programs, graduate degrees and certifications in education as well as online programs.