Bangor, Maine — September 28, 2023 — The University of Maine System (UMS) has been awarded the 2023 President’s Award by the Maine Development Foundation (MDF). MDF cited UMS’ “exemplary leadership” toward improving Mainers’ lives.
“The University of Maine System is leading actionable and scalable efforts that help drive systemic change toward a more equitable, inclusive Maine economy and ensuring Maine continues to be a great place to live and work for all,” said Yellow Light Breen, MDF’s President and CEO. “There is no part of our work that is not touched by or integrally dependent on our partnership with UMS and especially the flagship campus at UMaine. Whether it’s our work with the future forest bioeconomy with FOR/Maine, our work to support the seafood sector with SEAMaine with Sea Grant and several UM research centers involved, our Policy Leaders Academy economic education program for legislators, the collaborative efforts of MaineSpark to boost credentials of value for Mainers, or sending the most participants through our Leadership program since inception — UMS and UMaine are with us all the way.”
During this year’s program, “Aspire: Unlocking the Potential of Maine to Thrive and Prosper,” UMS was presented with MDF’s President’s Award for its wholistic approach to making affordable, quality education and career training available to every Mainer, and for its systemic efforts to incubate and support Maine entrepreneurs, businesses, and industries.
“To receive this kind of support from the Maine Development Foundation is beyond an honor,” said UMS Chancellor Dannel Malloy. “This is validation that everything we are working toward matters: an inclusive approach to education, encouraging students and lapsed students to complete their degrees. Education is the way toward creating a more robust state of Maine.”
University of Maine System Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation and UMaine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy reflected on the System’s and MDF’s shared vision. “This is a real celebration of the importance of working together to connect people, decision-makers and communities through trusted research, leadership and creative partnerships. These are the ways we will help stimulate new ideas and solutions while improving Mainers’ lives.”
About the University of Maine System
Established in 1968, the University of Maine System (UMS) unites seven Maine’s distinctive public universities, comprising 10 campuses and numerous centers, in the common purpose of providing quality higher education while delivering on its traditional tripartite mission of teaching, research, and public service.
In 2020 UMS became the first and only statewide enterprise of public higher education in the country to transition to a unified accreditation for the system. Much different than a merger or consolidation, unified accreditation is a new operating model for the University of Maine System that removes the primary barrier to inter-institutional collaboration.
A comprehensive public institution of higher education, UMS serves more than 30,000 students annually and is supported by the efforts of more than 2,000 full-time and part-time faculty, more than 3,000 regular full-time and part-time staff, and a complement of part-time temporary (adjunct) faculty.
Reaching more than 500,000 people annually through educational and cultural offerings, the University of Maine System also benefits from more than two-thirds of its alumni population residing within the state; more than 123,000 individuals.
The System consists of seven main campuses: The University of Maine (UMaine), including its regional campus the University of Maine at Machias (UMaine Machias); the University of Maine at Augusta (UMA); the University of Maine at Farmington (UMF); the University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK), the University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI); and the University of Southern Maine (USM). The System also includes a UMA campus in Bangor, USM campuses in Gorham and Lewiston-Auburn, the University of Maine School of Law, and the University of Maine Graduate and Professional Center.