It's official: The first school on the campus of California State University Channel Islands will be named after the late Martin V. ("Bud") Smith, one of the most well-known builders and philanthropists in Ventura County history.

This latest in landmark developments of the University is the result of a recent $3 million pledge from the Martin V. and Martha K. Smith Foundation, adding to an earlier $5 million gift by Smith and his wife Martha. The $8 million will now be used to for the creation of the Martin V. Smith School of Business and Economics, an endowed professor titled the Martin V. Smith Professorship in Land Use Studies, and the construction of the Martin V. Smith Center for Integrative Decision-Making.

"This is a significant step in the development of this University and its academic programs," said President Richard Rush. "These gifts will allow us to create a business school and program that prepares our students for careers of service, purpose, and leadership. It will allow us to create innovative learning that is practical, applicable, and relevant to today's professionals."

The gifts will not only establish and maintain the Martin V. Smith School of Business and Economics but will also be used to promote excellence in faculty research and scholarship as well as to fund student scholarships.

The endowed professor will be created to supplement the work of a distinguished faculty member by funding research, travel, and other expenses related to teaching and scholarship.

The Martin V. Smith Center for Integrative Decision-Making will provide CSUCI business students with real-life business learning opportunities. Using the latest technologies, students will be able to engage in computer simulations of running a company or corporation, providing hands-on experiences in making business decisions with local, national, or global implications.

"The generosity of the Smith family provides our students and faculty with dedicated resources for the development of our academic programs," said William Cordeiro, professor of management and chair of the business and economics program. "The Smith gift is a strong and dramatic example of our community members' supporting the growth of our public university. We will always be mindful of this wonderful gift as we work, teach and learn in the Martin V. Smith School of Business & Economics."

A special recognition of the new school was recently presented (see photo on homepage) to, from left, President Rush; members of the Smith family, sisters Lucinda Daley, Toni Gardiner, Vicki Pozzi, and Marjorie Tegland; daughters Kelly McWilliams, Tiffany Tegland, and Stacy Gardiner; and Professor Cordeiro.