The University of Akron – Press Release

Kathy Welsh

Akron, Ohio, August 24, 2006 – The trees have been cleared at the Medina County University Center (MCUC) site and bulldozers will soon cut in the road that will lead to the building, and prepare for the installation of utilities.

The site development, which will begin this month, is a welcome scene for The University of Akron and Medina County, and especially for the center’s newly appointed director Susan Louscher, who is working to create a physical presence for the center long before it opens in fall 2007. “These initial site development activities mark the beginning of a very exciting period. Over the next year we will not only see the construction of the building, but we will also begin to see the launching of the diverse curricula and services that will be offered through the Medina County University Center,” noted Louscher.

Dr. Elizabeth J. Stroble, UA senior vice president and provost and chair of the MCUC steering committee, says she is pleased that there is now a tangible foundation for the project. “This is a major milestone in what has been a very collaborative effort between The University of Akron and the people of Medina County to bring a physical presence for higher education into this growing community,” she says.

According to Ted Curtis, UA vice president for capital planning and facilities management, the site development is the first step in providing a natural format for the learning facility building. “The building is designed to work with the contours of the land, thus stimulating a wonderful footprint for the building, which will result in an ‘architectural welcome mat’ for this project and the Medina community,” he explains.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the Medina County University Center was held on Oct. 24, 2005. The center will emphasize workforce development, and will include state-of-the-art classrooms, computer labs, training facilities and distance learning labs. Land for the center, which will be sited on 50 acres near State Route 162 and Lake Road in Lafayette Township, was donated by the Medina County Commissioners. Adjacent to the center will be a 65-acre Business Technology Park coordinated by the Medina County Port Authority. The project has received state and federal funding, and business and private donations.

“From the beginning, the county envisioned a symbiotic relationship between the Business Technology Park and the University Center,” says Stephen Hambley, Medina County commissioner. “The design and construction of the two projects focus on creating and expanding high-tech research capabilities and promoting start-up companies thereby creating high-wage jobs. This step in the building of the Medina County University Center is the manifest expression of the wonderful partnership between the Board of County Commissioners with The University of Akron, the University Taskforce and other local and state officials.”

The University of Akron is the public research university for Northern Ohio. It is the only public university with a science and engineering program ranked in the top five nationally by U.S. News & World Report. Serving approximately 23,000 students, the university offers more than 350 associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and law degree programs and 100 certificate programs at sites in Summit, Wayne, Medina and Holmes counties.

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Medina County University Center
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