Chapter Six: Expanding Bases
The consolidation of SMU into the expanded UMass system was greeted with overall enthusiasm but the new UMass Dartmouth faced challenges and the need to re-evaluate its identity, especially in the balance of teaching and research for the faculty, professional accreditation of the business college, and the growth of graduate programs. A wide-ranging planning process, led by the Academic Planning Task Force emphasized these areas of change and also called for substantial growth in student enrollment to achieve better economies of scale. Another major change was an increased emphasis on the university's role in the region. Here, Chancellor Peter Cressy took a bold lead in promoting outreach and in establishing the university in off-campus sites. In this, the direction was set during his tenure (1993-99) and institutionalized under the current chancellor, Jean MacCormack. The major evidence of these initiatives is in the Star Store for the arts in New Bedford, the Advanced Technology and Manufacturing Center in Fall Fiver, and the Center (School) for Marine Sciences and Technology in New Bedford.