McConn Coffee Co. was named after the longest serving president of Marion College/Indiana Wesleyan University, William McConn. The McConn name was carried over from the name of the building where it was originally founded; McConn Auditorium. This structure was originally College Church, but when sold to the University it was renamed after President McConn. Used for decades as an auditorium, it was converted to a coffeehouse originally named "common grounds" when the Phillippe Performing Arts Center was built.
In 2002 the McConn Auditorium was razed and the Student Center was expanded allowing the successful coffeehouse to move to its current location. Several artifacts from the original location adorn the space including stained glass windows and a chapel light adding the warmth of the past to the pace of the present. The coffeehouse continues to be a testimony to the strength of experiential learning as it allows students first hand expertise in running a business while integrating those experiences in the classroom.
This key university internship site for business majors has trained and developed scores of students over the years. Each semester, students gain valuable hands-on-experience in the areas of marketing, human resources, purchasing, business development and accounting while assisting in the overall development of a profitable and mission-critical business. As many as 40 or more barista's are employed each semester as well. Products are offered ranging from unique coffees, to premium desserts and pastries, including the latest trends in specialty drinks. The operation is completely self supported and spins off scholarships for business students every year as well.