Harold Alfond Foundation Invests $240 across the University of Maine System
The 12-year commitment recognizes the University of Maine System’s first-in-the-nation unified accreditation.
The Harold Alfond Foundation’s historic investment in Maine and its people (External PDF) includes a $240 million commitment to the University of Maine System to bring transformative change to the state’s largest educational, research, innovation and talent development asset.
The Alfond investment in the University of Maine System is the largest ever to a public institution of higher education in New England and the 9th largest gift ever made to a U.S. institution of public higher education.
This commitment is a display of tremendous confidence in the faculty, staff and students of the University of Maine System. Collaboratively, UMS will build on strong foundations already in place at its universities and take effectiveness to new levels by implementing creative, innovative ideas and programs to serve the students and people of Maine.
The Harold Alfond Foundation’s $240 million commitment over the next 12 years recognizes how the University of Maine System’s first-in-the-nation unified accreditation, approved in June, 2020 by the New England Commission on Higher Education, provides new opportunities for faculty development, student support and innovative collaborative degree programs to advance Maine’s economy and workforce in partnership with the public and private sectors.
The University of Maine System will leverage the Harold Alfond Foundation’s transformative gift to secure an additional $170 million in matching funds over the next 10 years from private, state and federal sources, resulting in $410 million total investment in Maine’s public university system.
With the Harold Alfond Foundation’s historic commitment to transformative change in public higher education, the University of Maine System is beginning discussions about the opportunities with interested faculty, staff and students. In the initial stages of this work, termed UMS Transforms, university and System leaders will be convening information sessions and open forums, identifying individuals interested in participating and establishing an implementation structure. University community input, continued conversation with the Harold Alfond Foundation, and engagement with other grantees and state partners will help to define outcomes and measures of success for the initial stages of the initiatives.
The Harold Alfond Foundation’s historic commitment to transformative change in public higher education will include four key focus areas: the Maine Graduate and Professional Center; the creation of a multi-university College of Engineering, Computing and Information Science; new student success and retention initiatives and an investment in the University of Maine Athletics programs and facilities.
Our community leaders offer their thoughts on the Harold Alfond Foundation gift on our University gratitude page.