POSTED: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 - 8:53pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 - 8:59pm
Longview, TX — LeTourneau University will host a dedication of its newly named athletic village at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, April 19, at the university’s soccer fields, located just south and behind the Solheim Recreation and Activity Center on the main campus, 2100 S. Mobberly Ave.
The new Joyce Family Athletic Village includes more than $1.5 million in renovations over the past two years, including improvements to grading, irrigation and drainage for all of the athletic fields used for soccer, baseball and softball. The new athletic improvements also include lighting, new scoreboards, new brick field backstops for baseball and softball, expanded seating for spectators, ornamental fencing and monument gates.
“We are grateful to Joe Bob Joyce, his wife, Lou Ann, and his family for their generosity in providing the lead gift, as well as the many other individuals and companies who have provided this much-needed funding,” said LETU President Dr. Dale A. Lunsford.
“The Joyce Family Athletic Village will serve the many intramural and recreational sports that are very popular with LETU students, as well as the NCAA baseball, softball and soccer teams,” Lunsford said. “The new lighting has already greatly expanded the number of hours the fields can be used and has reduced the number of hours that student-athletes had to miss classes for games.”
Lunsford said the new fields have already served hundreds of student-athletes, as well as more than 700 outdoor intramural participants this academic year. He added that the Joyce family’s lead gift made possible one of the most significant improvements in the history of LETU athletics, enabling LETU teams to play their first nighttime games in the school’s 65-year history.
Joe Bob Joyce, Sr. is the founder and owner of Joyce Crane Service, a family-run business with 165 employees and dozens of pieces of equipment in locations in Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana. Joyce Crane supplies cranes for use in the oil and natural gas industries, highway construction projects, mining locations and industrial sites.
Joyce serves his local church as a deacon, treasurer and chairman of the finance committee and has shared his financial management expertise while serving on various boards and committees, including serving on LETU’s board of trustees since 2009. Joyce also has served the Safety Council of East Texas, Specialized Carriers and Riggers Association Foundation and Eastman Chemical Contractor Safety Council Board.
LeTourneau University is an interdenominational Christ-centered university located in Longview, Texas, offering academic majors in aviation, business, criminal justice, education, engineering, health science-nursing, human services, liberal arts, science and psychology. LeTourneau University also offers graduate degrees in business administration, counseling, education, engineering, psychology and strategic leadership. In addition to its residential campus in Longview, the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs online and at educational centers in Athens, Austin, Baytown, Bedford, Dallas, Harlingen, Houston, and Tyler.