University Hall

A Powerful Symbol of the Past; A Center of Learning for the Future

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, University Hall was the first permanent building on the campus.

It remains a direct link to the founders who envisioned Lincoln College as a beacon of knowledge on the Illinois prairie. For generations, it was the hub of learning on the College campus.  Just as Lincoln College has left its mark on the students who attended, many of those students left their own marks on University Hall. Follow the narrow steps up to the cupola and marvel at the names and initials carved, painted and written on the walls, steps and even ceiling.

Here is the truth – to write a name on a wall for future generations to see is a powerful testament to the influence a place has had on one’s life. At University Hall, nearly every inch of the cupola is covered in the names of students who felt such a strong bond to Lincoln College that they wanted future generations to see that this is where they had gone to college.

Time and changing needs took their toll on University Hall. It remains the central administration building for Lincoln College, but the halls no longer ring with the sounds of students. It would be far easier to simply preserve University Hall as a symbol of the past. But, that would be a disservice to the building, to the history of Lincoln College and, most of all, to our students.  Restoration and modernization is underway. In a few short years, students will again fill the halls. They will be able to take inspiration from earlier generations and seamlessly glide from the 19th to the 21st century as the architecture of the past blends with the technology of tomorrow.

Investing in University Hall gives donors the opportunity to pay tribute to the founders of Lincoln University, while investing in the next generation of leaders, entrepreneurs and professionals.

Wallace “Pat” Carroll, Class of ’61

When Pat Carroll reflects on his pre-college academic record, he laughs, “I think my parents were profoundly grateful that they found Lincoln College.”

After graduation, Carroll found success as a commercial airline pilot, director of Colorado Capital Bank, and then developed property in the Denver area.

Carroll served as a Trustee and became close friends with Lincoln College President Jack Nutt (1982-2002). As a tribute to his friend, Carroll elected to
contribute $1 million for work at historic University Hall. In recognition of the gift, the President’s reception area and office and the Trustees room will be named the “Jack D. Nutt Presidential Suite.”

“Ever since Jack passed away, I’ve been looking for a way to honor his work. When this opportunity came up, it was a perfect match.”