The University Environment
The University of Maine is located in the middle of the state and offers a safe and serene way of life, along with exciting opportunities for exploring the beautiful geography of the region. The University was founded in 1865, and is a public, land and sea grant co-educational institution. It is the “flagship” University of the seven member University of Maine System, which was created in 1968 when the Orono campus was joined with five state colleges into a cohesive, comprehensive public education system. Approximately 12,000 students are currently enrolled in degree-granting or continuing education programs at Oron. It is the only university in the Maine system to offer doctoral degrees.
The 1,100-acre University of Maine campus is a lovely combination of old and new, with modern buildings and facilities interspersed with several buildings included in the National Register of Historic Places. It is located in Orono, an attractive town with a population of 10,000, and is about eight miles from Bangor, Maine’s third largest city. Located in the center of Maine’s recreational areas, Orono is an hour’s drive from stunning Acadia National Park and the town of Bar Harbor, as well as the Maine coast. Orono is two hours from several major ski areas, the wilderness area of Baxter State Park, and Mt. Katahdin. Maine’s largest city, Portland, is just two hours away with a fantastic foodie scene (including a Trader Joe’s!) and a vibrant arts community. The cities of Boston, Montreal, and Quebec are within easy driving distance. The latter two cities give you a taste of Europe without an expensive transatlantic flight.
See the slideshow (at right) for pictures our staff have taken in their travels around Maine. Can you find the live moose and guess where author Stephen King lives?
The University is a major cultural center for Northern Maine. The Collins Center for the Arts, one of the largest performing arts centers north of Boston has recently been expanded. It has emerged as the focal point for the campus and community for educational and entertainment opportunities presented by the world’s leading artists and performers. In addition, a regular series of films, concerts and lectures by prominent individuals representing a variety of experiences and perspectives are offered under the auspices of Student Government. The School of Performing Arts annually offers an academic year season of drama, comedy, musical, and operatic productions. Regular art exhibitions are presented by the art department, and a portion of the University Art Collection is always on display throughout the campus. Furthermore, the cultural resources of nearby Bangor, the coastal area and Portland are available to enjoy. During the summer months many world renowned artists and performers vacation and perform in Maine. The very popular American Folk Festival occurs in late August in Bangor. The lobster, of course, is here year round!
For the sports minded, the University offers intercollegiate athletics, intramural sports and related club activities. A new football stadium and outside track has recently been completed, as well as an enclosed practice dome for all major sports. A modern indoor pool, an indoor ice arena, gymnasium facilities, an “adventure center” with a great climbing wall are available to staff as well as students. Moreover, a beautiful, state of the art Campus Recreation Complex/Fitness Center is very close to our center and all staff enjoy free membership there, and use it.
Additional recreational activities in the surrounding area include camping, hiking, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, downhill and cross country skiing, tobogganing, and golf. A bike and cross country ski path begins adjacent to our building. The University participates in all the major sports with special community enthusiasm directed to its ice hockey team.