The Student Health and Counseling Center could become the William R. Powell Student Health and Counseling Center if voted upon by the Texas State University System Board of Regents at their quarterly meeting today and tomorrow.
This idea was first proposed by the Black Alumni & Friends Club.
“The organization was looking for an opportunity to honor the many contributions that Dean Powell made to the university,” Drew Miller, executive director of counseling and health services said. “For many reasons this seemed like an excellent opportunity.”
Powell was the first black person hired by Sam Houston State University in an administration position. He joined the Dean of Student Life Office as assistant dean of student life in 1972. He served this position until he was promoted to associate dean of student life in 1977 which he served until his retirement from SHSU in 1987.
Powell was also involved with the development of the University Counseling Center in the 70s. He died March 12, 2013.
“Without his efforts, we could not be where we are today,” Miller said. “It’s clear that he was someone who valued students and understood that for students to truly thrive, we need to meet their needs beyond the classroom.”
Upon the Regents’ approval of the name change, there will be an official ribbon cutting ceremony during the May board meeting hosted on campus. An artistic display with an image of Powell and information on his history will be unveiled at the ceremony and placed in a prominent area of the building.
“I’m pleased that the Student Health and Counseling Center is going to be named after someone of Dean Powell’s character,” Miller said. “His efforts helped pave the road to the comprehensive services that we provide today. It’s only right that this building be named in his honor.”