April 23, 2014
The University of New England celebrated its new campus in Tangier, Morocco, during a dedication ceremony April 22nd attended by a distinguished group of guests including Maine Governor Paul LePage and the recently-appointed United States Ambassador to Morocco, Dwight L. Bush Sr.
At an event attended by nearly 200 individuals from the United States and Morocco, UNE celebrated its achievements during an hour-long ceremony in its pristine academic facility. The ceremony included remarks from Ambassador Bush, Gov. LePage, UNE President Danielle Ripich, Ph.D., UNE Vice President for Global Affairs Anouar Majid, Ph.D., and UNE Board of Trustees chair Mark Doiron.
Gov. LePage spoke frankly about the beauty of Morocco and detailed his experiences touring Tangier’s winding medina and the bustling Renault factory. LePage also urged the inaugural class before him to take their seasoned, well-rounded minds from abroad back home.
“We need you at home!” joked LePage.
Dr. Ripich praised the “visionaries” of the UNE Board of Trustees and the 10-year “Vision 2017” strategic plan and their courageous decision to build a campus in the Arab world as well as the passion of Dr. Majid. Her highest praise, however, was reserved for the bravery of the first group of UNE Tangier students.
“Our students are also the pioneers embracing their Morocco immersion. From bartering in the markets to debating politics in the cafes to juggling academic classes and labs …these experiences have collectively helped change and define them, and I have no doubt will also help them change the world,” said Dr. Ripich.
Guests were treated to a 10-minute video, entitled “The Road to Morocco,” detailing the story of Dr. Majid and the building of the campus in Tangier; a UNE Tangier “Happy” video; and a traditional Moroccan storytelling session known as a “hilqa” led by UNE Tangier students.