Tuesday, April 7, 2015
Please note that the Walsh College Story as originally posted contained incorrect information. We apologize to the administration at Walsh College and our readers for this mistake and any confusion that this error may have caused.
Walsh College and the City of Troy have grown together for more than five decades in generating educational and economic advancement for the community.
Ever since Morris Wattles sold 20 acres of his farm, just south of his home, to the Walsh site committee in June 1968, Walsh has proudly called Troy home, building on the business legacy begun with the College’s founding in Detroit, in 1922.
The College’s Trustees approved final building plans in August 1969. The College broke ground in November 1969, opening the doors on September 10, 1970. The original 10,600 square-foot building had six modern classrooms, a library, faculty and administrative offices, a student lounge and a first-year enrollment of 303 students.
Walsh’s academic excellence has fostered further expansion through the years. In April 1973, the Trustees approved a 7,400 square-foot addition that tripled the size of the library and added two lecture halls, a small bookstore, and a student lounge.
In April 1982, Walsh celebrated its 60th anniversary by adding 10,400 square-feet of space for its enrollment of 1,819 students. Expansion in fall 1990 added 33,000 square feet, more than triple the size of Walsh’s first Troy building, and renovated 9,000 square-feet. A new wing on the east side of building added 10 classrooms, three lecture halls, and a cafeteria.
While the face of the College fronting Livernois remained relatively constant, the 37,000 square-foot, two-story Jeffery W. Barry Center, at the rear, was completed in 2007. Other renovations and additions include Blackstone LaunchPad in 2010 and a Finance Lab in 2013. The site now encompasses nearly 38 acres.
In April 2014, Walsh College committed to its current enrollment of 4,038 students’ learning experiences and their success potential — as well as ongoing investment in Troy — announcing $15 million in improvements to the original building.
The project, now underway, will include a two-story, 27,000 square-foot renovation and addition and a 28,000 square-foot renovation to existing spaces. Completion is expected in spring 2016.
Views of 1968 Construction of Walsh College on farm land purchased from Morris Wattles
Walsh College before 2015 expansion
Pinkert Construction of Birmingham broke ground for the new campus in November 1969. On September 10, 1970, Walsh College officially opened its doors in Troy.
Blakowski, Bonnie. 2014. Interviewed by Emily Blakowski, Rochester Hills, MI.
Lagerkvist Johnson, Lisa, Gloria B. Ellis, Iva Mackinnon, and Kathleen Moran.
1997. The History of Walsh College 1922-1997. Troy, MI: Walsh College Marketing Department.
Image Source: Lisa Lagerkvist Johnson, Before and After Pictures of the New
Walsh College Building on Former Farmland in Troy, 1970, The History of Walsh College 1922-1997
To commemorate the City of Troy’s 60th Anniversary in 2015, we will publish a different story each day that highlights a person, discovery, or event that occurred locally, regionally, nationally, or even globally between 1955 and 2015 and that helped shape our lives and our community. We will try to post stories on important anniversary dates, but we also realize that dates are less critical than content and context. We will include the facts related to controversial stories, allowing our readers to form their own opinions. We invite you to read and comment on the stories. Your suggestions for topics are also welcome and can be posted on our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/TroyHistoricVillage. You can also email stories or ideas to the 365 Story Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org