Fort Myers resident Evelyn L. Egan donated the funds to design and construct the Observatory named in her sake. Egan’s undisclosed monetary gift, which spurred construction of the edifice, came after a suggestion from David McQuade, a member of the Southwest Florida Astronomical Society. He thought FGCU would be an ideal location to the region for a worthy observatory.
The Egan Observatory boasts three powerful, computerized telescopes, in addition to a "state of the art" 16 inch Ritchey-Chretien reflective telescope, which is the same optical design as the Hubble Space Telescope on a smaller scale.
FGCU has an advantage over many other locations in the United States being situated in the southernmost region. Unlike areas to the North, FGCU has greater visual access to starry southern skies.
At the groundbreaking in 2000, Egan remarked, “This University will have everything it needs if people will help.”
President of the FGCU Foundation Fred Pezeshkan said that the gift was matched by the State of Florida to produce an academic building that will not only be used by FGCU students but also by the local Southwest Florida Astronomical Society and the community.
Installation of the Ritchey Chretien telescope