Last updated: February 17. 2013 9:22AM - 184 Views

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DALLAS– The Misericordia University community officially dedicated John and Mary Metz Field House, the newest addition to Misericordia’s growing campus, Sept. 29 to acknowledge the significant leadership and philanthropy of the couple and their family.

The new 21,750-square-foot field house is named in honor of John C. Metz, chairman of the Board of Trustees, and his wife, Mary, who have both been longtime supporters of the University and also supplied the leadership gift in the Pursuit for Acclamation Campaign that was undertaken to fund improvements and additions to athletics facilities and residence hall space on campus.

“The John and Mary Metz Field House serves as a testimony to the caring approach that Misericordia takes towards all of its students, especially student athletes,’’ said Michael A. MacDowell, president of Misericordia University. “The field house provides our Division III athletes with the highest quality training and associated equipment available. We are fortunate to have a chairman who cares so deeply about our students and their wellbeing.’’

Metz Field House is a $4.1 million state-of-the-art facility that includes athletic training rooms, expanded locker facilities for men’s and women’s field sports, team meeting rooms, a weight room, showers rooms and public restrooms. A $3 million state grant helped to partially fund the new construction, which is located between Mangelsdorf Field and the newly constructed baseball diamond, which will be named in honor of the Robert Tambur family.

“I feel strongly that the new field house is a part of a momentous time in Misericordia history,’’ said Mr. Metz. “It will provide support for the new football team and all the sports programs that have consistently done so well.

“Mary and I, along with my sons, John and Jeff, and daughter, Maureen Metz Gallagher, see this as a great way for us to be a part of this historic event and to continue our steadfast support of Misericordia and the Religious Sisters of Mercy,’’ he added.

The Pursuit of Acclamation Campaign supported more than $14 million of investments in campus infrastructure, including Tambur Field, Metz Field House, Michael and Tina MacDowell Hall, Mary Ellen “Mac” McGeehan Field, and an expanded fitness center in the Anderson Sports and Health Center.

“2012 has been an outstanding year of fundraising for Misericordia,’’ said Sue Helwig, vice president of University Advancement. “With just $200,000 left to be raised for our Pursuit of Acclamation campaign, we hope to surpass our $7.5 million goal before we end our first football season in November.’’

Mr. Metz is the executive chairman of Metz Culinary Management in Dallas, Pa., which manages food services for school districts, colleges and universities, corporate clients and major hospitals. In addition, his company, Northeast Restaurant Group, Inc., operates many award-winning franchise locations for national brands such as Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Wolfgang Puck Express and T.G.I. Friday’s.

A member of the Misericordia University Board of Trustees since 1988, Mr. Metz and his colleagues on the board have overseen rapid growth in overall enrollment, academic programs, campus facilities and prestige. Most recently, U.S. News and World Report ranked MU in the top tier, 47th out of 142 colleges and universities in the Best Regional Universities – North Category in the magazine’s 2013 edition of Best Colleges. Misericordia’s ranking is up 20 places from 2007.

Misericordia also holds for 2012 a “Best Northeastern College” designation by the Princeton Review, a student-survey based measure of quality colleges and universities. MU is one of 220 institutions of higher education The Princeton Review has recommended in its “Best in the Northeast’’ section of its website feature, “2012 Best Colleges: Region by Region,’’ that posted Aug. 1 on PrincetonReview.com. Washington Monthly magazine ranked Misericordia University among the top 37 percent of all master’s degree-granting institutions of higher education in the country in a survey that stresses community service and social mobility of students.

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