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Unity College Announces Technical Institute for Environmental Professions

March 30, 2021

With support from the Libra Foundation, Unity College will establish a world-class environmental education program on the Pineland Farms campus

Tucked into the rolling hills of New Gloucester, Maine, Pineland Farms is a recreational, agricultural, and professional hub. With over 5,000 acres consisting of farms, forests, and a central campus of diverse businesses, Pineland will also be a fitting location for Unity College’s latest innovative program launch: The Technical Institute for Environmental Professions.

pineland farms
Pineland Farms New Gloucester, ME

The institute will incorporate a mix of in-person and online learning to offer associate degrees, certificates, and continuing professional education. “This will allow students to accelerate their futures and make immediate impacts in their chosen career fields,” said Chief Learning Officer Dr. Erika Latty.

The educational landscape is changing. Many students no longer want to spend the time and money it takes to complete a baccalaureate program. We are creating a school and partnerships that will provide a linear path to an environmental-based career,” said Unity College President Dr. Melik Peter Khoury. “This program will not replace our current bachelor’s and master’s programs. It is simply offering more options to increasingly differentiated audiences as our college continues to grow.”

The Technical Institute is designed to provide access and affordability, allowing students to upskill, retrain, or find brand-new jobs in the environmental career space. Maine’s environmental economy is growing quickly, and the Institute will offer courses in related fields such as environmental engineering, veterinary technology, the solar industry, and other growth sectors.  

Unity College’s Enterprise Model will deliver this innovative educational programming at a significant value to students as well. The cost for courses at The Technical Institute for Environmental Professions is targeted for approximately $250.00 per credit hour for degree seeking students.

Libra Foundation, which owns the Pineland campus, will also provide startup support to the Technical Institute. “We are pleased to work with Unity College and its leadership as they launch a transformative educational model. Locating the Institute at Pineland Farms is an ideal match,” said Erik Hayward, Executive Vice President of the Libra Foundation.

To ensure high-caliber educational programming from the outset, Unity College has hired Dr. Amardeep Kahlon, a nationally recognized leader in competency-based education and distance learning, as the school’s dean.

“Courses will be built using competency-based design principles thus ensuring mastery of concept. Our students can be confident knowing there is a career waiting for them upon completion and our employer partners will get competent and trained employees. We will be partnering with environmental companies and other industries that are seeking workers skilled in the environmental professions.” Kahlon said.

Classes will commence spring 2022 and follow Unity College’s term model with courses starting every 5 weeks. More information on courses and start dates will be released in the coming months.