New Undergrad HQ in the Works

Brainstorming begins for Mulva Hall, a future center of business education, faculty research, and academic programs at the gateway to campus

Creativity and imagination were in the air as participants put on their design thinking caps during Mulva Hall Vision and Engagement Sessions held in February. Students, staff, alums, and faculty met with design criteria architectural firm Perkins & Will to provide feedback on early concept ideas.

New Undergrad HQ in the Works image
Interested stakeholders met in February to discuss design ideas for Mulva Hall, the future home of undergraduate business education at UT Austin. The new building will be next to Rowling Hall and the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center.

Mulva Hall, an expanded new vision for undergraduate business education, faculty research, academic programs, and centers, has been in the inception stage for several years. The project was formally launched last year as a teaching, research, and learning facility comparable with with Robert B. Rowling Hall for graduate education, which opened in 2018.

The new building will be adjacent to Rowling Hall and the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center, creating a unified campus for business education at a prominent gateway to the Forty Acres.

The building takes its name from the lead donors, Jim Mulva, BBA ’68, MBA ’68, the former chairman and CEO of ConocoPhillips, and his wife, Miriam Mulva, who pledged $40 million through their foundation. Interest in supporting this landmark project is high, with $120 million raised so far (of the initial goal of $135 million) from approximately 30 early investors.

Dean Lillian Mills appointed two project advocates: Caitlin Mullaney, senior associate dean and COO of McCombs; and Ty Henderson, associate dean for undergraduate programs. The project plans are divided into five areas, each headed by faculty and staff with specialized skills and knowledge:

Mulva Hall Project Areas

  • Learning Environments
  • Student Experience
  • Faculty Experience
  • Centers and Institutes
  • Work Integration and Technology

“Mulva Hall must be vibrant, imaginative, and multifunctional,” says Henderson, “enabling new ways of teaching, learning, and researching that are just over the horizon. We are thinking forward, which is challenging
yet fun.”

The overall project is a set of three related projects: 1) utilities enablement, 2) parking assessment, and 3) building planning, design, and construction. Mullaney explains the importance of the Project Core Team, stating, “We are presently focused on what goes in the building before we begin to consider what the building might look like.”

To meet these goals, in December 2022, the university contracted with top architectural firm Perkins & Will, which has worked with over 35 universities across North America. The firm was recently ranked №2 in the country by Architectural Record magazine.

Mullaney has high expectations for the project beyond just modernizing the facility. “Mulva Hall will elevate our research and learning
environments as we aspire to become the highest-impact public research business school.”

Significant opportunities remain for even more naming-level investors. Mulva Hall is a rare chance for donors to connect their name to the future of business education at The University of Texas at Austin.

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