Update: Mount Ida campus begins operation in Fall 2018

About 200 staff and students began classes this week


(Courtesy of the WCVB official facebook page)

By Kathrine Esten, Assistant News Editor

The University of Massachusetts Mount Ida campus officially began operations this fall with approximately 200 total staff and students.

The University acquired the Newton campus following the closure of Mount Ida College at the conclusion of the 2017-2018 academic year. The purchase was finalized May 17, according to a statement from UMass News & Media Relations.

For the 2018-2019 academic year, approximately 150 veterinary technology program students who formerly attended Mount Ida will continue their progress toward a UMass degree.

“We intend to continue the program permanently going forward, given its quality and strong interest in the major,” said Ed Blaguszewski, the executive director of strategic communications at UMass. “We are in the process of developing the long-term structure of the program.”

Blaguszewski added that about 75 students will live on the campus in New Hall, which houses a maximum of 132 students, according to UMass Residential Life Student Services. Four student resident assistants, all former Mount Ida students, will support the residential program.

Several specialty programs operated by Mount Ida were adopted by other colleges and universities. UMass Dartmouth welcomed more than 200 former Mount Ida students, particularly in fashion design and interior architecture and design.

The dental hygiene program will continue to operate on the Mount Ida campus but will be under the direction of Regis College, a private Catholic University in greater Boston, according to a statement from the college.

According to Kelley Tuthill, vice president of marketing and communications at Regis, there are 85 students in the dental hygiene program: 76 are transfers from Mount Ida, and the remainder have transferred from other universities or are first-year students. These students will live on the Regis campus and will be provided shuttle service to attend classes on the Mount Ida campus. Beginning in fall 2019, the program will be operated entirely at Regis.

“We are delighted to be able to continue these superb programs as part of Regis’ portfolio of health science programs,” said Regis College President Antoinette Hays in the same statement. “We are grateful to UMass for allowing us to use the Mount Ida campus facilities for the next academic year and we look forward to welcoming Mount Ida students, faculty and staff.”

The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education approved Cape Cod Community College to adopt a Funeral Service specialty program formerly offered by Mount Ida, according to a July 31 press release from the college.

In partnership with Bridgewater State University, where the program will be located, CCCC plans to begin the program on Oct. 22 according to Christine Pauk, CCCC assistant director of college communications. Currently, only former Mount Ida students will be eligible to participate in the teach-out program, but CCCC is looking to receive approval for on-going accreditation of the Funeral Services program for new students.

“We are very pleased to move forward with this program that will offer a pathway for former Mount. Ida students to complete their degrees,” stated President John Cox in the same press release.

“Beyond specialty programs, a small number of former Mount Ida students have transferred to the four UMass undergraduate campuses,” Blaguszewski noted. Final numbers of former Mount Ida students on these campuses are not yet available.

“Overall, a substantial number of former Mount Ida students are continuing their studies through the coordinated efforts of many institutions,” Blaguszewski said.

Kathrine Esten can be reached at [email protected] or followed on Twitter at @kathrineesten.