Bob Prillaman, a retired senior vice president of Caraustar Industries, has served on the KSU Foundation board of trustees for 25 years.
"His contributions to this institution are immeasurable," Papp said. "Perhaps most significantly, he brought WellStar Health System and Kennesaw State University together in addressing the region's health care needs."
The 192,000-square-foot building, which is slated to be open in July, will house KSU's WellStar School of Nursing.
"I don't know how to express the honor we feel," Bob Prillaman said. "(The building) will define KSU as not only the largest nursing school in the state, but will be one of continued quality."
Currently, only one in nine qualified applicants are accepted into the nursing program due to size restraints.
"It is ironic that in the middle of a nursing shortage that the university with the state's largest nursing program is actually turning down qualified applicants," Bob Prillaman said. "We need nurses, and this new building will allow KSU to significantly increase the number of new nursing students each year."
He said university officials had to turn down about 600 qualified applicants last year. Papp said the building will allow the university to increase its nursing graduates from about 185 per year to about 250.
The Board of Regents approved a $42.5 million state grant two years ago, which allowed for construction to begin on the health science building, which will be called Prillaman Hall. The building will serve as an extension to the existing WellStar School of Nursing facility, Bob Prillaman said. He said officials still need to raise about $7.5 million to outfit the building and purchase furniture and lab equipment.
That grant to begin construction of Prillaman Hall came around the same time the university launched its capital campaign with a goal of raising $75 million for academic programs, facilities, scholarships, faculty and staff developments, and athletics.
To date, $51.3 million has been committed, which averages almost $13 million every six months since the campaign began. One of the lead gifts was a nearly $6 million contribution for Prillaman Hall.
Bob Prillaman, who serves as campaign co-chair, said he believes money is coming in more quickly than expected, "but the best thing with the capital campaign is people are really seeing the value of KSU to this community and this region."
Other major donations with the capital campaign include: $1.5 million from the Harnisch Foundation of New York to establish a Center for Sustainable Journalism; $2.3 million from the Bernard Osher Foundation in California for Continuing Educational programs benefiting senior citizens; more than $4 million in endowed scholarships; and an $8.8 million grant from the Department of Education for the Quality Enhancement program in teacher education.