Cherry and Webb-Fall River

Cherry and Webb UMD's Center for Professional and Continuing Studies to locate at Cherry & Webb building in Fall River The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's new Center for Professional and Continuing Studies will be located at Fall River's Cherry & Webb building, following that site's purchase by the Fall River Office of Economic Development (FROED). Mayor Edward Lambert hailed the redevelopment project as a "cornerstone for downtown revitalization."

UMD's Center for Professional and Continuing Studies to locate at Cherry & Webb building in Fall River 

The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's new Center for Professional and Continuing Studies will be located at Fall River's Cherry & Webb building, following that site's purchase by the Fall River Office of Economic Development (FROED). Mayor Edward Lambert hailed the redevelopment project as a cornerstone for downtown revitalization. 

UMass Dartmouth has reached an agreement with FROED to lease an estimated 30,000-40,000 square feet of space at the South Main Street facility. Once fully operational, the center is expected to serve between 400 and 500 students in day and evening classes. The balance of the 75,000 square foot building will be available for lease for complementary uses. 

Mayor Lambert, FROED's chairman of the board, called the project, another truly remarkable and uncommon opportunity for Fall River's downtown. He pointed to the success of the International Institute of Culinary Arts and predicted that the UMass facility would further energize the area. The partnership that we are now forging with UMass Dartmouth will help revitalize not only this one building, but also our entire central business district into a vibrant commercial and educational center, he said. 

The mayor praised Chancellor Jean F. MacCormack for her unique vision and commitment, to extending the university's reach into inner cities. UMass Dartmouth, under the dynamic leadership of Jean MacCormack, is an invaluable partner as we work together to build a better community. 

Chancellor MacCormack said, We're very pleased that this partnership between the city of Fall River, the Fall River Office of Economic Development, and the university will provide the people of Fall River and its surrounding towns with a convenient and affordable place to continue their education. We look forward to developing this program to its fullest potential so that the people of Fall River can achieve their own. This is really a `coming home for UMass to one of the cities that was so influential in starting our first days. 

Dr. Susan Lane, associate vice chancellor for continuing studies, said,The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's Division of Continuing Education is pleased to be in partnership with the city of Fall River and FROED. This September, we will provide degree completion programs, in close collaboration with BCC and other community colleges, as well as specialized training programs such as the IT Academy. These programs will meet the technical needs of the region's employers and employees and will offer an array of professional and personal enhancement programs and activities. Whether your interests are to finish a degree, begin your studies, improve your skills, learn new skills or engage in personal enrichment activities, this new UMD Center of Professional and Continuing Studies is being designed to respond to you. 

According to Kenneth Fiola Jr., Esq., FROED's executive vice president, plans call for building rehabilitation to begin next month. He said that the structure will be gutted and re-fitted with state-of-the-art systems. In a nod toward historic preservation, the original façade will be uncovered and restored. Our target date for completion of this project is September, 2002, Fiola said. The university would like to open the Center of Professional and Continuing Studies next fall semester. We are confident that we will meet that deadline. 

Fiola said that his office is now finalizing a financial package through a consortium of area banks and the Greater Fall River Development Corporation. The financing will be used to fund the rehabilitation phase of the project. FROED will continue to work closely with UMass Dartmouth officials in the coming weeks as the project officially begins.


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