U. of Maine Approves a Restructuring of Its Presque Isle Campus

Trustees of the University of Maine system took another step on Sunday toward streamlining operations and reducing costs by approving a reorganization of the University of Maine at Presque Isle, the Portland Press Herald reports.

The campus, like many regional public institutions across the country, has seen enrollment shrink and has struggled to close budget gaps in recent years. With about 1,300 students, Presque Isle is the second-smallest campus in the Maine system. Under the reorganization, it will eliminate the positions of campus operations officer and director of student success, and will look for ways to expand a “special partnership” with the University of Maine at Fort Kent. The provost at Fort Kent will lead an effort to identify areas of collaboration between the campuses, reporting to the presidents of both.

The changes at Presque Isle come only months after the system’s announcement, in March, that it would merge its Machias campus, which enrolls fewer than 800 students, with the flagship, in Orono. Consolidating back-office functions, like information technology and procurement, across the seven campuses is one of the cost-cutting strategies the system has turned to under its “one university” initiative. Others include a review of academic programs across all of the campuses. Faculty teams will evaluate whether, for example, multiple campuses should offer the same degree, or only a few should.

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