Greenville Technical College cuts ribbon for Benson Amphitheater and Pavilion

NOVEMBER 3, 2021

Greenville Technical College Cuts Ribbon for Benson Amphitheater and Pavilion


A 2014 gift from Jim and Evelyn Benson has allowed scholarships, expansion, and improvements for Greenville Technical College’s Benson Campus, with the most recent project being an amphitheater and pavilion that were celebrated today with a ribbon cutting that included remarks by Governor Henry McMaster.

Seven years ago, the Bensons donated $2 million dollars and pledged a million more, bringing their total gift to the Greenville Tech Foundation to three million dollars, the largest cash gift ever received at the college. However, the couple has given to the college and the campus in countless other ways. Among many efforts, the Bensons have created a scholarship fund. In addition, Jim served on the Greenville Tech Foundation Board and chaired a successful effort to raise funds for students in the Greer community.

“The Greer community has been very good to me, and Evelyn and I want to give back in order to drive growth in this area,” said Jim Benson, president of an automotive group that includes four dealerships in Greer and Easley along with three in Spartanburg. “I want young people to be able to take their hopes and dreams and put skills behind it, and Greenville Tech is the place to do that.”

The Benson Amphitheater and Pavilion will impact students studying at the Benson Campus. One component of the extensive work recently completed is sculpture pads along a path that will allow Visual Arts students to show off their work with art walks. Students in healthcare programs will be able to celebrate completion at their campus with nursing pinnings and other special ceremonies. Classes can be taught outside in these spaces, and clubs and organizations can come together for meetings and events.

In addition, the new facilities will be available to the community. The amphitheater is intended as a gathering place where special events and performances can be held. The pavilion will host speakers, panel discussions, community meetings, and more. A walking path promotes health and wellness. The hope is to invite people who may not have visited the campus before so that they can be introduced to higher education close to home.

“We are very grateful to Jim and Evelyn Benson for the continuous support they have provided to Greenville Technical College and to our students,” said Dr. Keith Miller, president of the college. “Jim and Evelyn find joy in giving others a helping hand, and their generosity has made a lasting impact on this campus, at the college, and in the community.”