The new freshman dorm at the University of Alaska Southeast was named in honor of one of its favored administrators during a Thursday evening ceremony at the campus.
The First Year Residence Hall will now be known as the John R. Pugh Residence Hall. The name is a tribute to the chancellor whose 16-year tenure in that position ended May 29.
The dorm officially opened for students in fall 2014.
Speaking at a University of Alaska Board of Regents meeting Thursday, Pugh said he was in Dublin, Ireland, when he received a call from current chancellor Richard Caulfield.
“I’m very honored that you approved that,” Pugh told the assembled regents.
Before becoming chancellor in 1999, Pugh worked as dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and Dean of Faculty at UAS.
He joked that he was recently diagnosed with a stress fracture in his foot: “I told the doctor I don’t quite understand it — I’ve been through 42 years of stress and now I get this fracture?”
Pugh also said UAS is “blessed” with an abundance of resources and will get through the state’s current fiscal problems just as it has previous financial slumps.
“I’ve been through this three times — Alaskans roll up their sleeves and get it done,” he said.