Miami University held a groundbreaking ceremony on Monday, Oct. 25, for the incoming Richard M. McVey data science building. The ceremony, originally scheduled for Sept. 22 but postponed due to inclement weather, was held to celebrate the ongoing construction of the McVey building.
Miami alumnus Rick McVey (‘81) contributed a $20 million gift to the university – one of the top five largest single gifts in Miami’s history – to fund the project. After graduating with a degree in finance, McVey founded MarketAxess, an electronic trading platform for investors and dealers in 2000. McVey still serves as chairman and CEO.
“It is time for Miami to take a bold step forward in data science,” McVey said at the ceremony. “This is a special day for Miami, and an even more special day for me.”
Data science consists of the culmination of computer science, statistics and finance skills. The McVey building will serve as “an academic epicenter for data science,” said President Greg Crawford, who spoke at the ceremony.
“We are grateful for and admire all that you do for the university,” Crawford said of McVey.
Crawford also hopes the McVey building will allow students to collaborate in a “transformative environment” and give students the opportunity to conduct interdisciplinary research.
Provost Jason Osborne believes students from all departments can benefit from the collaborative environment that inspired McVey.
“We don’t know when a conversation with a student in another department will spark an idea for a new business or a new research proposal,” Osborne said. “But by providing students with the space to collaborate, we give them that opportunity.”
The McVey building will house the departments of emerging technology in business + design, statistics, and computer science and software engineering, as well as the center for analytics and data science (CADS).
Students will have access to state-of-the-art technology in virtual reality, robotics, cyber security and artificial intelligence through McVey.
“My experience [at Miami] really made me want to make a difference for current Miami students,” McVey said. “And there’s no better place to do that than data science.”
Construction for McVey began this fall and is expected to be completed for use in January 2024.
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Additional reporting by Asst. Campus & Community editor Taj Simmons.