The Harkins Society was founded during the Providence 2000 fundraising campaign to recognize those benefactors who have named Providence College in their estate plans. Our planned giving donors were instrumental in PC’s successful completion of that campaign, and it has only grown in importance as we pursue new, ambitious, strategic philanthropic goals. In creating the society, we hope to honor our benefactors who have named us in their estate plans. By doing so, we hope to recognize today the gift that will be so generously given in the future.
It is most appropriate that this society is named in honor of Harkins Hall, our cornerstone building since the College opened its doors in 1919. Every generation of Friars has its own memories of Harkins Hall, which has housed nearly every aspect of student and Dominican life on campus, including student dining facilities, the post office, the bookstore, Dominican residences, a chapel, and even the campus theatre. Today several administrative offices, including the President’s office, can be found in Harkins, which still provides space for many undergraduate and graduate classes.
Bishop Matthew Harkins (1845-1921), the seminal figure in the founding of Providence College, would have been pleased to see the Harkins Society grow to its current stature. As a consecrated Bishop of Providence in 1887, he was an extraordinary priest and visionary leader who enabled the diocese to flourish under extraordinarily challenging circumstances. Bishop Harkins, aided by many—including the Very Rev. James Raymond Meagher, O.P., Provincial of the Dominican Province of St. Joseph—realized his longstanding dream of making Providence College a reality in February of 1917.
In the ensuing 100 years, the College has grown and prospered, due in no small part to the generosity of people like you. Still, its fundamental nature has remained true to the Dominican ideals developed over nearly eight centuries of preaching, teaching, and evangelization. That is, Providence College pursues truth, Veritas in all it does and in all it will do in the future. The College’s future is bright, indeed, and your generosity helps ensure a second century as successful and impactful as the first.