Pitt-Johnstown Receives $250,000 Commitment from Murtha Foundation

Natalie Bombatch

posted November 01, 2014

Pitt-Johnstown announced today a commitment of $250,000 from the John P. Murtha Foundation. This gift will support construction of the John P. Murtha Center for Public Service on the University campus and comes in addition to the state and University funds that have already been committed to this project.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the Center, which will be located between Kunk’s Drive and Krebs Hall, was held in late September.

Designed by IKM Architects, the Center will highlight the vital role John P. Murtha, a Pitt-Johnstown alumnus, played in House leadership and in various legislative issues during his three-decade plus career; promote understanding and inquiry into key local, regional, and national issues; advance public discourse or debate on policy issues; and support related academic experiences at Pitt-Johnstown through collaboration with various academic divisions.

The Center will include a large multi-purpose space, exhibit spaces, and a veteran’s lounge and will host events focusing on issues of public policy, civic engagement, military service, and economic development.

“I want to express my profound appreciation to Joyce Murtha, Ed Sheehan, and the other members of the Murtha Foundation for their robust commitment to this project and their desire to provide funding that will enhance the quality of this facility to reflect the excellence of the Congressman for whom it is dedicated,” said Jem Spectar, President of Pitt-Johnstown. “I also want to thank Mike Kane and the Community Foundation of the Alleghenies for their role in facilitating this truly impactful gift.”

Founded in 1927, Pitt-Johnstown is located in the Laurel Highlands of Western Pennsylvania and is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh. Pitt-Johnstown is the regional leader, educating for the RealWorld. The distinctive combination of our people, programs, and place results in exceptional performance in preparing students for career and professional success. Pitt-Johnstown is recognized by the Princeton Review as a “Best in the Northeast” college, by G.I. Jobs as a “Military Friendly School,” and by Pennsylvania Business Central as a "Top 100 Organization.” Additionally, Pitt-Johnstown has been presented with The Seven Seals Award by the US Department of Defense’s office of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR).