Unity College relocated its distance education program to a farm in New Gloucester to accommodate the growing program on a 5,000-acre spread, the college announced Tuesday.

Amy Arnett, vice president for Distance Education at Unity College, said relocating the college’s distance education department to Pineland Farms in New Gloucester gives the college easy access to more populated areas in Maine and New Hampshire. Unity College photo

Since the program’s inception in 2016, the need for staff and space has increased, according to Joel Crabtree, associate director of media relations in a news release.

In November, the department completed the move from Unity’s main campus to Pineland Farms, a 5,000-acre farm in New Gloucester, just 30 minutes north of Portland.

According to Unity’s president, Dr. Melik Peter Khoury, the department’s move to Pineland Farms is beneficial in more ways than one.

“I have always said that Maine is our classroom, and being welcomed by Pineland Farms is just another step in realizing that vision,” Khoury said. “Much like Unity College, Pineland Farms is dedicated to sustainability, offering its visitors and surrounding community not only one of the most beautiful landscapes Maine has to offer but a venue that encourages positive educational and recreational opportunities. It’s easy to see why having our distance education offices at Pineland is beneficial for us and a perfect fit.”

According to Dr. Amy Arnett, vice president of the Distance Education Program, the move is also a practical fit for Unity.

“Relocating the Distance Education offices to Pineland Farms enables us to truly stretch our mission and find new audiences,” Dr. Arnett said. “It’s also not that far from Boston, Manchester, some of the other larger populated areas in New England, so we can start to develop connections and partnerships with those people down there.”

In addition to its main campus in Unity, Unity College has sites in Moose River, Portland and Thorndike.

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