The State Board of Regents approved a building-naming policy Tuesday that was result of a controversy over a multi-million dollar gift. The University of Iowa considering naming its College of Public Health after Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield after the insurance provider offered the school a 15-million-dollar gift.
The board unanimously approved the new policy that does not place additional restrictions on corporate names. Regents president Michael Gartner said that’s what he favored. Gartner says he believes the three presidents should have as much flexibility as possible in naming of anything at a university. " I have now problem with the policy as it existed, it got all caught up in the Wellmark situation, which was certainly unique," Gartner said.
The new policy would require the schools to carefully scrutinize potential donors, whether they are corporations, foundations or people. Gartner says the policy gives the three presidents of the schools the flexibility they need. Gartner says he’s a big believer that the presidents should have all the leeway possible and then come to the board at the end.
U-I president Sally Mason said she is pleased with the policy and it gives the right amount of direction and flexibility. The board waived a second reading of the policy, so it will go into effect immediately.