The Role of UMass Dartmouth
As the only Massachusetts Research University south of Boston and due to its central location on the SouthCoast, UMass Dartmouth is well-positioned and eager to serve as a catalyst for the creation of an interconnected, interdisciplinary marine science and technology Blue Corridor along the SouthCoast.
UMass Dartmouth has always played a leading role in the economic development of Southeastern Massachusetts. Originally founded as a school to meet the workforce needs of a thriving textiles industry in the late 1800s, UMass Dartmouth has continued to be the leading provider of educated workforce talent in the region.
Since joining the University of Massachusetts system in 1991, UMass Dartmouth has continually and steadily strengthened its educational and research activities to support the region’s marine economy. UMass Dartmouth’s first Ph.D. program was Electrical Engineering with a focus on Marine Applications. Our research faculty in this area have won numerous awards, started marine technology companies, and are internationally recognized, particularly in the area of underwater acoustics.
The School of Marine Science and Technology is recognized for having saved the New Bedford scallop fleet by developing and implementing new technologies to assess the fisheries resource; and UMass Dartmouth has expanded its marine research foci to include significant programs in water quality, marine robotics and marine renewable energy, and internationally prominent work in marine systems simulation.
To capitalize on this burgeoning strength, the university is forming a new Center for Marine Environmental Research Innovation and Technology (MERIT Center) that brings together outstanding faculty from seven departments in three colleges who focus on critical areas of marine technology research and who are in the process of developing new degree and other training programs to support the marine economy.
Building on the strength of its faculty, UMass Dartmouth is poised and prepared to increase its training programs in marine science and marine technology, both for traditional and non-traditional students; and has begun the process of expanding its partnerships, both within and beyond Southeastern Massachusetts to leverage our shared talent and maximize the impact and reach of new program development.
For these reasons, UMass Dartmouth is ready to lead Blue Economy development on the SouthCoast.