Message from UMPI president

17 years ago

To the editor:
After a quiet, but very productive, summer we are back to high-speed operation at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. Students began returning to campus on August 20. Classes began on August 27. Special ceremonies marked the arrival of new students to the UMPI community.     This fall, our new and returning students will be greeted by almost 20 new senior administrators, professors, and coaches. Other articles will introduce you to the remarkably talented folks we have added to Aroostook County and the University. Their prior professional work has been as far afield as the Middle East, India, the Czech Republic, Nigeria, and western Canada. Yet there are prior connections with Presque Isle, Mapleton, Bridgewater, and St. Agatha.
The new faculty members bring remarkable experiences to their teaching and mentoring. They are also creators of knowledge. They are working scientists, creative educators, and leaders in their professional fields. They are the teachers and role models who will allow our students to prepare for the ever-growing range of careers for which a University bachelor’s degree is essential. If a student aspires to be a business leader, educator, law enforcement professional, athletic trainer, social worker, working artist, health care professional, psychologist, or scientist, UMPI can take them there. If the career requires further graduate or professional education, UMPI can be a great place to start with a broad undergraduate liberal education.
Other ventures have moved toward completion. Last year, in response to strong demand from our friends in the K-12 community, the University of Maine System created a master’s degree program for in-service teachers that will allow them to complete their degree work close to home, rather than commuting to Orono or Portland. UMPI faculty members will be among the first instructors in the program. We had planned for an initial group of 20 students. Demand was so strong that we added a second section. Instruction will begin this fall.
Our initiative to bring wind power to campus moves ahead following careful study of technology, costs, and project impacts. Our objective remains to save over $100,000 in our electric power bill each year. The initiative is not just about saving dollars. We also view this as part of our educational role — both for our students and for the Aroostook community. We will provide our information and experiences to all who can benefit from our venture.
We are working on many other in-depth projects that you will be hearing about in the coming weeks and months. Each is an effort to make our campus community, and the larger community of which we are a part, a better, more connected, and exciting place to live.
I continue to delight in the opportunity to lead this fine university. We invite you to join us in our work. Consider taking a class. Join us for a cultural program or athletic competition. Encourage your group to meet on campus. Join our marvelous Gentile Hall recreational facility. However you choose to get involved, we’ll be here, ready to welcome you.

Don Zillman, president
University of Maine at Presque Isle