Republican Congresswoman Kay Granger was honored at Texas Wesleyan on Tuesday night when the Fort Worth-based university named the mall at the center of campus after the Wesleyan alumna.
Granger said she never expected to have a part of her alma mater named after her. She never intended to be in Congress, for that matter.
“I expected to be a teacher and a mother and a wife,” said Granger, who is also a member of the Texas Wesleyan Board of Trustees. “I never expected to be honored like this.”
Jim Lewis, Texas Wesleyan’s vice president of advancement, said naming the mall after Granger gives students someone to look up to.
“It’s great having such a wonderful senior member of Congress as a role model recognized here, and, frankly, a woman as a role model for our students,” Lewis said.
The Kay Granger Mall, a grassy, open area at the center of campus, serves as a gathering place for students and a venue for campus events.
Lewis said carnivals, outdoor concerts, recreational activities and other events can be held in the space. He called it the heart of campus.
“We want it to stay an open green space, mainly for student events outdoors,” Lewis said.
The introduction of the Nick and Lou Martin University Center made the mall smaller, but Lewis said that’s a good thing. It was too big before, he said, and now serves as a place where the campus comes together.
The mall sits between the campus library, university center, administration building and the campus center, which houses athletics, residential life and a weight room.
Granger said she is proud to have the space named after her, as well as her background with the university.
“I didn’t think I could afford [Texas Wesleyan] but they gave me a little scholarship and, more importantly, told me where to get a job,” Granger said. “What they did for me, they still do for students today.”