BANGOR, Maine — The University of Maine System’s board of trustees voted Monday to move the University College Bath/Brunswick from its current location in Bath to the former Brunswick Naval Air Station. The move allows the University College to remain in close proximity to Southern Maine Community College, which has been offering classes at the former base for several years.
The two schools currently share the Bath space but will close their doors there in June and continue to operate in Brunswick.
“It’s just logical that the university relocate it’s program at the same time [as SMCC] because we’re working in collaboration with each other,” said Sheri Stevens, executive director of administrative services at the University of Maine at Augusta, who has been working on the plan.
Rent and maintenance costs in the new location are expected to amount to about half the cost of the current space, according to the UMS board meeting agenda. Since renovations are necessary at the Orion Building where the University College will be located, the move is not expected to save the UMS money for another five years.
The cost of renovating the Orion Building is estimated at $300,000.
“The committee felt that this was a win-win situation,” said Norman Fournier, chair of the finance, facilities and technology committee, referring to the fact that the move would allow for co-location with the community college and the transition would have a financially net neutral impact.
The University College Bath/Brunswick is one of several outreach centers operated by UMS. Students can enroll in a program offered by one of the seven UMS campuses and participate in the class virtually using facilities at the center. The Bath/Brunswick center currently serves about 350 students.