VOLUME 30, NUMBER 33 THURSDAY, May 20, 1999

UB, ECC plan educational center downtown
Partnership proposing relocation of Educational Opportunity Center to ECC's City Campus

send this article to a friend

Reporter Editor

The university and Erie Community College are moving ahead with plans for a partnership that would relocate the Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) to ECC's City Campus and create "an educational center" in downtown Buffalo.

Although the plan remains in the "discussion" phase, a meeting held last week on the proposal drew about 200 administrators and faculty members from both institutions.

"I think this is one of those true 'win-win' situations," said President William R. Greiner. "There is a good deal of synergy, a good deal of merit with us working together."

Greiner pointed out that there is some "dovetailing" of EOC and ECC programs, noting that the "next stop" for many EOC graduates is ECC, while EOC offers many of the "training-school to work" programs that ECC used to offer.

EOC provides educational job training and related support services for low-income populations of Western New York, including literacy and English-as-a-second-language education, GED test preparation, college preparation and a full range of career-specific training programs in allied health, business, computer technology, and communication and media.

Greiner said that ECC, with three campuses, has a surplus of space, while EOC must find new quarters, since its building at 465 Washington St. is part of the site of the proposed convention center.

"This (collaborative proposal) is a major, major plus," he said, noting that it would allow both institutions to continue their presence downtown. "It makes an enormous amount of sense to think about co-locating."

Mary Gresham, vice president for public service and urban affairs and UB's point-person in the negotiations, said such a collaboration with ECC would provide "more (educational) options to the populations that we both serve."

For EOC, Gresham said, that would mean "a direct, seamless, well-articulated pipeline from basic-skills preparation through to the associate's degree level, if that is desired, or through to a broader range of vocational and technical options that will result from our working together."

Creation of an educational center in the downtown area would provide easier access to a variety of educational opportunities, she added. "Workforce development is common to both (EOC and ECC) missions, and we believe that it is better to work together to deliver this to the region," she said.

It is likely that some of the UB professional programs, such as management and law, would be interested in offering programs at a downtown site, she said, although no formal discussions have taken place yet.

Front Page | Top Stories | Briefly | Kudos | Jobs | Events
Current Issue | Comments? | Archives | Search
UB Home | UB News Services | UB Today