The state-of-the-art facility — made possible with a gift from Donald P. Bellisario and his wife, Vivienne, along with significant support from the University — opened for the start of the 2021-22 academic year.
The Bellisario Media Center
Open, Collaborative, Modern and Technology-driven
April 21, 2017Gift Announced
Donald P. Bellisario commits $30 million to support communications students and faculty and to establish the state-of-the-art Donald P. Bellisario Media Center.
Summer 2017University groundwork and approvals
August 2017Benchmarking, facility tours
Faculty and staff teams discover ideas to shape the design process for the Bellisario Media Center, which will be constructed in Willard Building on the University Park campus.
Sept. 15, 2017Architect Approval
Studios Architecture approved as architect after review of proposals submitted by more than 30 architectural firms.
Summer 2018Construction approvals, hiring contractor
December 2018Renovation begins
March 2019Renderings complete
Spring 2019Construction begins
March 2021Occupancy permit granted
Construction continues. Faculty begin moving into their offices, but building not open to the public.
Early Summer 2021Construction complete
Full faculty, student and public access to the Bellisario Media Center.
August 2021First day of classes in the Bellisario Media Center
Opportunity to support the Bellisario Media Center
Alumni and friends who support the Bellisario Media Center Equipment Fund with gifts of $250 or more will have an ongoing presence on the center’s digital donor wall — consistently reminding students they are part of a community invested in their future.
|$250||Audio equipment such as camera-mounted microphones, three boom-pole kits, a drone for filming, and design software packages|
|$500||A 360-degree camera and gimble stick for pop-up newsrooms|
|$1,000||Professional lenses and a mobile public relations lab for presentations and contests|
|$2,500||A camera body|
|$5,000||A media database and monitoring tool|
Bellisario Media Center Q & A
Resources to Support Future Media Pioneers
Alumnus Donald P. Bellisario, a 1961 Penn State graduate, and his wife Vivienne, committed $30 million to support communications students and faculty and to establish the state-of-the-art Donald P. Bellisario Media Center. The donation was one of the five largest single gifts ever made to the University.
“Donald P. Bellisario ranks among Penn State’s most accomplished alumni, and his achievements and generosity will continue to inspire our students and faculty for generations to come,” says Penn State President Eric J. Barron. “Through this historic gift, the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications will have the resources to support future media pioneers as they pursue the same innovation, excellence, and integrity that have characterized Don’s own career.”
The Bellisarios’ gift was announced April 21, 2017, and the University’s Board of Trustees expressed its appreciation by renaming the college the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications.
The commitment will allow the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications to build on its reputation as one of the best programs of its kind in the nation.