MACON – Mercer University today dedicated the Stembridge Center for Student Success, which houses the offices of Student Success, Student Financial Planning, Registrar, Bursar and Student Loans.
“By putting those offices all in the same building, no matter which one students go to, if they chose the wrong one, it’s only down the hall or up a floor or down a floor,” said Dr. James Netherton, executive vice president for administration and finance. “Those offices always collaborate on helping solve problems with students, but being in the same facility will amp that up greatly.”
The Center is named for Willard D. “Bill” Stembridge, a native of Moultrie and 1968 graduate of Mercer’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. As a student, he was involved in many extracurricular activities, including membership in Alpha Tau Omega fraternity, and worked in the registrar’s office.
Following graduation, Stembridge was employed in the University’s Office of Men’s Housing and Student Activities until December 1968, when he reported for active duty in the U.S. Army Reserve.
He returned to Mercer in 1974 as assistant registrar, becoming a full-time staff member in the office where he served as a student employee during all four years of his undergraduate career.
In 1986, Stembridge left the University to begin a long and distinguished career in public service working for U.S. Rep. Dr. J. Roy Rowland and Congressman Saxby Chambliss until retiring in 2014.
Currently, Stembridge serves on the Board of Governors for the Museum of Aviation at Robins Air Force Base, the Georgia National Guard Youth Challenge Foundation Board and the Board of Directors for Mercer University Press.
He generously supports many areas of Mercer, including the Townsend School of Music, Mercer Athletic Foundation, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Mercer Press.
“Bill has been as supportive a graduate and as active a cheerleader of one’s alma mater as I’ve seen during my 30 years in higher education,” said Mercer President William D. Underwood. “Whether it’s attending fine arts or theatrical events, participating in lectures, or cheering at athletics events, Bill is everywhere having anything to do with this University.”
The Stembridge Center is located at 1283 Adams St. on the northwest edge of the Macon campus at the site of the former Macon-Bibb County Senior Citizens Center.
The facility was purchased by Mercer in 2015 and leased to the county until August 2018 when the University began renovations with the county nearing completion of the new Elaine H. Lucas Senior Center at Central City Park.