New Computer, Data & Information Sciences Building Named for John and Tashia Morgridge

For the first time, a University of Wisconsin–Madison building will bear the name of John and Tashia Morgridge, alumni and visionary partners to UW–Madison, who have for decades made significant contributions to the university, beginning with a humble $10 gift in the 1960s. University leaders have recommended and on Friday, April 5, 2024, the Board of Regents approved, naming the new state-of-the-art School of Computer, Data & Information Sciences (CDIS) building Morgridge Hall. 

The School of Computer, Data & Information Sciences represents a forward-thinking collaboration focused on the intersection of technology and humanity. The Morgridges’ gift of $140 million, including a $50 million challenge grant that inspired gifts from additional donors, has been instrumental in bringing Morgridge Hall to fruition.  

The building is slated to open in 2025 and will feature modern classrooms and research facilities, collaborative spaces and a commitment to sustainability. Morgridge Hall is poised to become a hub of creativity, innovation and discovery and represents a bold investment in the future of computing, data and information sciences at UW–Madison. 

The $260 million building is the largest privately funded project in UW’s history and their remarkable generosity underscores the Morgridges’ deep commitment to advancing education, research and community engagement.  

John & Tashia Morgridge
John & Tashia Morgridge

“Tashia and I owe a debt of gratitude to those who made our education possible,” John Morgridge says. “Our investment in CDIS is our way of paying it forward to ensure that future generations have the same opportunities we did.” 

John and Tashia are 1955 graduates from UW–Madison and have a longstanding history of philanthropy and service. John’s distinguished career as a business executive and educator, along with Tashia’s dedication to special education and literacy intervention, exemplify their unwavering commitment to making a difference in the world. 

“We are honored to name this transformative building ‘Morgridge Hall’ in recognition of John and Tashia’s deeply transformative contributions, both to this building and to so many aspects of our great university,” says Chancellor Jennifer L. Mnookin.  

In addition to housing the CDIS departments of Computer Sciences, Statistics and the Information School, Morgridge Hall will also be home to the Department of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, the Data Science Institute, the internationally recognized Center for High Throughput Computing and the N+1 Institute. The facility will advance education, research and service to the state by bringing together a diverse set of disciplines in bold and imaginative new ways at UW–Madison. 

“Morgridge Hall will bring faculty and students together across a range of disciplines and inspire collaboration across campus and with the broader community. This is vital to fostering ideas and knowledge to drive economic growth, research and learning,” says College of Letters & Science Dean Eric Wilcots. “We thank the Morgridges for making that vision a reality for the faculty, students and all who will benefit from the innovative and inclusive environment this facility will enable.” 

Computer science and data science have continued to be among the top in-demand majors at UW–Madison in recent years, emphasizing the need for a modern student ecosystem on campus. Morgridge Hall will offer classrooms with the latest features for connectivity and collaboration, flexible research laboratories for computational and robotics capabilities, an inviting learning commons for studying and coming together, and ample advising and student services suites to support student success.   

“The facility that John and Tashia have worked with us to design and build will be a welcoming beacon for students and researchers across campus and for K-12 students and industry partners,” says CDIS Founding Director Tom Erickson. “Their inspirational view on education in the information age motivated us to design a forward-looking, sustainable and flexible building. It has been an honor to work with John and Tashia on what this building will mean for the future of our campus and the State of Wisconsin.” 

The 343,000 square foot, seven-story building is also designed to be the most sustainable structure on campus, with features to conserve water, reduce energy consumption and take advantage of solar energy. 

“Thousands of young minds will walk its halls, occupy its labs and sit in its classrooms, and their assignment will be to understand and address some of the world’s most pressing problems,” says John Morgridge. “We wish them well.” 

Construction on Morgridge Hall is slated to be completed in 2025, in time for the start of fall 2025 semester. CDIS is also raising additional funds for the building through a campaign called “The Badger Effect,” harnessing the power of collective giving by bringing together 500 donors. Each will be represented on a unique donor wall in the new building that visually represents the ripple effect Badgers have when they come together.