Pit Stop #20: University of Maine System

How’s this for a set of impressive careers? Lawyer, Mayor, Governor, and Chancellor. (I know I’m forgetting one, because I asked Chancellor Dan Malloy what he was planning for his sixth career.) When I asked which of his jobs had caused him to lose the most sleep, Malloy answered candidly, “Pretty much each one.” He was Mayor of Stamford, Connecticut during 9\11, when many in his town lost their lives. He was Governor of Connecticut during the massacre at Sandy Hook. And now he has presided over the state system of Maine when it became the first system in the country to unify its public colleges under one accreditation. The Chancellor stays busy.

Map of the campuses of UMaine

We talked quite a bit about the system’s early decision to open this fall. He speaks with great pride about his team, the leadership on their seven campuses, and the way faculty, staff, and students across the system have enabled the success they have had in opening.

The state of Maine boasts of one of the lowest rates of infection in the country, and the rates on the Maine system campuses are even lower — a mere 26 positive tests in more than 27,000 students.

Additionally, enrollment in the system this fall, compared to last, is virtually unchanged and about half of the students on campus are able to take at least one face-to-face class. 

door with UME decals
Yep, they are all open!

Much of our conversation focused on the system’s unified accreditation which NECHE approved just this July. Malloy has already seen a substantial growth in multi-campus programs–one of the major goals of the unification. And he believes that some of the smaller campuses will be able to diversify their offerings in major ways,  something they didn’t have the resources to do on their own when separately accredited. It’s a system on the move and it has a real mover and shaker at the helm.

flags in front of the library at UME

Listen to my moving-and-shaking conversation with Chancellor Malloy below:

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