History of Center

Vision to Reality

The Carol Tatkon Center was the dream of a committee of students, faculty and staff who took the lead in planning a universal living/learning experience for first-year students. Conveniently located in the south wing of historic Balch Hall, the Center was designed to connect the academic heart of the University with the residential center of first-year student life on North Campus.

Administered by Campus and Community Engagement and as a unit in Residential and New Student Programs, the Tatkon Center encourages student-faculty interaction in this comfortable space. From beautiful classrooms and comfortable study spaces to exhibitions, drop-in academic support services, and programs designed to introduce students to all Cornell has to offer, the Center—named in memory of an alumna and Cornell trustee—reflects much of what Cornell's first-year experience is about. The Tatkon Center's student staff provide a welcoming home base for new students and a place close to home where they can "Ask Anything!"

Who was Carol Tatkon?

Carol Clark Tatkon '59 was president of Balch Hall and managing editor of The Cornellian in her senior year. An economist, she attended the New School for Social Research (now part of the New School University) and went on to a remarkable career in the oil industry. Ms. Tatkon was a loyal alumna who served as a university trustee. After she died in 1997, her daughter, Heather Tatkon Powers '91, M.P.A. '93, and son-in-law, Eric A. Powers '86, M.B.A. '93 worked with the University to find a fitting use for her bequest to Cornell. They settled on a facility dedicated to improving life on campus for students of today and for future generations, the Carol Tatkon Center.