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Professor, Alumnus Endows Two Rooms at the School of Information Studies


Professor Scott Bernard earned degrees from four academic institutions, but none holds a closer place in his heart than the School of Information Studies, where he received a master's degree in information management in 1998 and where he has been teaching since 1999. So when the school announced its Technology Endowment Campaign for Hinds Hall (TECHH)—an effort to ensure that the school's new home on the Quad will always have the most cutting-edge technology in its classrooms and research laboratories—Bernard saw an opportunity to express his gratitude in more than words. The wonderful feelings I have about the school and its commitment to a faculty of one combined with the remodeling of Hinds Hall presented an opportune moment to fund the naming of two rooms in the facility, says Bernard, who directs the school's graduate programs in Washington, D.C. I thought, When will I ever again have an opportunity like this to leave a mark on a place that I respect so much?'
He recently committed a substantial gift to the school to name the Bonnie Lou Harman Collaboratory, a multi-use classroom and meeting space in honor of his mother, and the adjacent Bernard Family Faculty Office, in honor of his entire family, including his father, Ralph Bernard. The Harman Collaboratory and the Bernard Family Faculty Office, located on the third floor in rooms 336 and 334, respectively, are an outward expression of Bernard's faith in the school. The School of Information Studies is a very special place, where three distinct disciplines—information management, telecommunications and network management, and library and information science—come together in a collaborative environment, he says. On one level the faculty in these areas do their own thing, but on another, they are all very much part of the same team. It's a collegial atmosphere that the school leadership has been very careful to preserve and encourage. I can't think of a more deserving place to support.
School of Information Studies Dean Raymond von Dran sees the gifts a sign of Bernard's confidence in the school. To have this kind of support from one of our faculty members shows that we're heading in the right direction, he says. And because this gift supports our TECHH fund, its impact will benefit future generations of students as well. We are so grateful for his generosity.
In addition to supporting the school, the gifts pay tribute to his family, most notably to his mother, Bonnie Lou Harman. My mother was a very social person who loved to be part of organizations and activities that would have people interacting on many levels, so the collaboratory seemed like a very appropriate entity to carry her name, he says. Bonnie Lou Harmon attended the University of California Los Angeles, where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority. She later became a homemaker, raising Bernard and his three siblings at the family home in Newport Beach, California. She died from breast cancer in 1975, while Bernard was at college. She was very supportive of her children and valued their education, he says. She'd be delighted to know that there is room bearing her name on the Syracuse University campus that overlooks the Quad and enables people to come together to learn.
Bernard says he and his family look forward to attending the dedication of the rooms on April 20. He says he's already begun to move into his new office that carries his family name. And although he is based out of SU's satellite campus at the Greenberg House in Washington, D.C., and lives in nearby Virginia with his wife, Joyce, he still feels very connected to his home on the Quad. Our roots are still in this area, he says. It will be nice knowing these rooms will be there.

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