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History of the Tatkon Center

From Vision to Reality

Tatkon Center

The Carol Tatkon Center has its origins in a collaboration between students, faculty, and staff, who took the lead in creating a living/learning experience for first-year students with the goal of bringing academic engagement to students where they live. The center seamlessly connects academics and student life, encouraging student and faculty interaction, peer mentoring, and student support in the south wing of historic Balch Hall. Tatkon’s classrooms and comfortable study areas, drop-in academic support sessions, and programs promoting well-being, service, fun, and peer connections, underscore Cornell’s commitment to the newest members of the Cornell community. Art exhibits, a café, music, poetry, and student-led programs contribute to a vibrant, student-centered space. The Tatkon Center's knowledgeable and welcoming student staff create a second home on campus for new students.

Who was Carol Tatkon?

Carol Clark 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.