Husson University has introduced a new home for its business school courtesy of a $4 million donation.
Harold Alfond Hall, the new home of Husson’s College of Business, was unveiled in a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday afternoon.
The Harold Alfond Foundation donated the money via a matching gift to the university in 2017. It was Husson’s largest ever donation at the time, said Eric Gordon, Husson’s executive director for communications.
Harold Alfond is best known as the founder of the Dexter Shoe Company and for creating the U.S.’s first factory outlet store. His name adorns facilities at colleges and universities across the state.
The new Harold Alfond Hall that was unveiled at Husson University Thursday will house the business school, which includes the schools of accounting; business and management; hospitality, sport and tourism management; legal studies; and technology and innovation. Credit: Linda Coan O’Kresik / BDN
Previously, Husson’s business school did not have its own dedicated building, Gordon said.
The push to raise money for a new business school building was part of a larger campaign called “Shaping Our Future” that aimed to expand Husson’s academic program offerings, said Husson President Robert Clark.
Alfond Hall will house the business school, which includes the schools of accounting; business and management; hospitality, sport and tourism management; legal studies; and technology and innovation.
The new building includes state-of-the-art labs, classrooms with stadium-style seating, and a financial technology center with touch screens and stock tickers in “a 360-degree configuration,” said Marie Hansen, dean of the College of Business and New England School of Communications.
Inside the building, legal studies professor Michael Kamorski and three students demonstrated how a new criminal justice classroom allows them to simulate active crime scenes and process fingerprints using a nearby illuminator machine.
The business school’s claim as the largest such school in Maine and its entrepreneurship program will help the College of Business serve as “a hub of business growth” in the Bangor area and Maine, said Heather Johnson, the commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic Community Development.
“It’s creating the workforce of tomorrow,” she said.
Husson graduates more people with MBAs than any other school in Maine, said Greg Powell, the Harold Alfond Foundation’s president and CEO.
There have been some construction and supply chain delays preventing outside landscaping from being completed, but the physical building will open Monday, when students are on campus for the new school year, said Lynne Coy-Ogan, Husson’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.