Huron University, incorporated in 1863 and the founding college of Western University, has grown significantly over the decades. Since moving to its current location in 1951, Huron has welcomed new residences and academic facilities, as well as an increase of full-time students from 45 in 1956 to 1,300 currently enrolled in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. One of the latest additions to the campus is the new Frank Holmes Centre for Leadership, Ethics and Entrepreneurship. Entro helped Huron find a special way of recognizing the donors who made this building possible.
With guidance from Huron’s advancement department, we explored many concepts that communicated Huron’s commitment to academic excellence and brand identity, eventually landing on the “H” (for Huron) in the form of a bookcase, with donor names displayed on the spines of the books. Located right at the entrance of the building, the vibrant red of the books reflects the school’s brand and its focus on striving for knowledge and innovation, as well as the ‘Heart of Huron’ Fundraising Campaign. With an installation that accommodates a variable number of names, our aim was to celebrate current ‘Heart of Huron’ campaign donors while enticing others to contribute.
To make the books look as real as possible, we sourced a specialty fabricator, Anstey Bookbinding, to create roughly 200 individual book casings in 12 different sizes. The fabricator WSI performed a 3D direct digital print on the linen spines, and then adhered them to the shelf to ensure they remain in place. The installation has been very successful: after one year, a whole new set of donor names was added.
The donor recognition program extends to the rest of the Frank Holmes Centre , a 40,000-square-foot instructional and community-gathering space. Interactive classrooms, seminar rooms, boardrooms, wings, a lounge, a student commons and other spaces are named after individual donors. Plaques in the Centre’s 450-seat auditorium also recognize contributors.