August 6, 2004
There is over a month of summer left but the forecast for August 19, the day the University of Maine at Fort Kent is slated to officially open its new residence hall, is calling for snow and plenty of it.
Though no real flakes will fall, members of the community attending the dedication and tours of the new facility on Thursday, August 19 at 3:00 p.m. will certainly feel as if old man winter has paid them an early visit.
The new residence hall, which resembles a ski lodge and accommodates 150 students, will serve as the backdrop for the opening ceremony that will take on a distinctly festive theme complete with wintry music and refreshments along with other snowy surprises.
The dedication of the newly constructed three story, 47,595 square foot building is expected to draw hundreds to the St. John Valley campus.
"The entire UMFK community and the St. John Valley region have been waiting, with much anticipation, for the opening of this wonderful new facility," said UMFK President Richard Cost.
Incorporated into the design are 38 suite-style arrangements and air conditioning in part of the building to accommodate for expanded summer programming at the university.
The $7 million project was funded through a University of Maine System bond that is to be paid back with revenue from housing fees of students who occupy the new building.
Leading the opening and dedication ceremonies will be President Cost, who will serve as master of ceremonies.
"The opening of the new residence hall marks the beginning of a promising year for UMFK. This beautiful building represents our bright future," added Cost. "It is essential in order for us to meet the needs of the growing number of students who want to study right here in Northern Maine. It is without a doubt the most attractive student residence hall I have ever seen."
Extending greetings at the event will be State Senator John L. Martin; Don Guimond, Fort Kent town manager; Ludger Lang, mayor of Clair, New Brunswick; Charles Johnson, UMS Board of Trustees chair; James Thibodeau, UMFK Board of Visitors president; Deborah Pringnitz, UMFK chair of faculty; and Sarah Smith, UMFK Student Senate president. Speaking on the significance of the new residence hall to the UMFK campus community will be Scott Voisine, director of student services.
Following the ceremony, community members will be invited to take guided tours of the new building and enjoy refreshments.
The opening and dedication of the new residence hall will mark one of two such ceremonies on the campus in the coming months. On September 17, the campus community will hold a second ceremony for the new Acadian Archives/Archives acadiennes facility.
For more information on the dedication and opening ceremonies for the new residence hall, contact the university relations office at (207) 834-7557.