Pomona College Magazine
Volume 41. No. 2.
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IT Building Named for Cowart Family
Support / The J.C. Cowart Information Technology Building

Creating his own academic program, Jim C. Cowart '73 majored in computer science long before Pomona College formally offered that major. While still a student, he helped teach Pomona's sole programming class. He even successfully lobbied for a foundation grant that allowed him and other tech-savvy students to set up their own computer mini-center in the Mudd-Blaisdell residence hall.

Three decades later, Cowart is still taking the initiative for technology at Pomona, this time by making the naming gift for the College's new information technology building. With a formal dedication May 2, the J.C. Cowart Information Technology Building was named for three J.C. Cowarts, including his wife,Janet C. Cowart '70, and their son, Jefferson C. Cowart '07.

At the dedication, the senior Cowart said the family had come full circle with the College's computer science program, since he was the College's first computer science major, and his son was in the first class of graduates since computer science had become its own department.

"From his days as a student, Jim Cowart has been a leader in helping the College to stay at the forefront of technology," said President David W. Oxtoby. "The naming of this building for the Cowarts is a particularly fitting choice. Their generosity and foresight are deeply appreciated by the College community."

A principal in a private capital firm, Cowart said the family has long wanted to do something special for the College and the IT building presented the perfect opportunity, considering their long-time interest in the field. An added bonus: their son worked in the building.

Opened in January 2006, the 12,000-square-foot IT structure allows the College's entire ITS Department to be housed at one site, while also offering enhanced technological facilities for students, faculty and staff. Key features include a 24-hour student computer lab; spacious conference room equipped with an interactive whiteboard; and a classroom that can be set up with as many as 30 laptops for training sessions.

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by Pomona College
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