The University of Nevada, Reno recently added a bronze statue to the front entrance of the William J. Raggio building. The statue, which depicts children playing, was willed to the College of Education in November 2011 after receiving it as a trust gift from Nena Miller, who passed away on October 22, 2010.
Miller was an education advocate and wife of former University of Nevada, Reno President N. Edd Miller, who served as president from 1965-1973. During her lifetime, Miller was an active member of the Reno community who continuously supported the University. Mitch Klaich, the associate director of development of University programs in the College of Education, witnessed Miller's strong support of College programs, including the Dean's Future Scholar Program and the Child and Family Research Center.
"Nena was a friend and donor of the College of Education for years and just a really special woman to the University," Klaich said.
Miller's will expressed her desire that her estate facilitate the move of the statue from her front yard to the University, specifically to an area near the College of Education building. The estate paid for all costs associated with the move and installation of the statue. Chris Cheney, dean of the College of Education, hopes that the statue becomes a focal point for education students.
"I hope the statue is something that education students will remember as a part of their experience here at the University," she said. "I think it could be one of those things on campus that students not only have a special affinity for, but helps create memories."
Cheney also intends on having the statue become a symbol for the College of Education. She would like to see images of it used on the College website, brochures and possibly other materials that are used to promote education programs.
Miller additionally bequeathed the University a watercolor painting by Craig Sheppard that was presented to her husband and is entitled N. Edd Miller UNR Commencement 1974. Sheppard was a renowned artist and the former chair of the University's Art Department. It was accepted by the Special Collections and University Archives Department and added to its collection.
The statue will be revealed at the College's awards ceremony, College Celebration, 10 a.m., May 9. The College Celebration will also honor award-winning faculty, graduate students and the College's funding donors.