LOWELL, Mass. – UMass Lowell Chancellor Jacquie Moloney
, the first woman to lead her alma mater, where she has instilled an entrepreneurial approach in academics and operations, was honored today at the first-ever “Women Who Mean Business” awards.
Moloney is one of seven women – and the only educator – selected for the honor because they “collectively represent the best Massachusetts offers in business acumen and savvy,” according to the Boston Business Journal, which presented the awards.
Moloney, both in her role as chancellor since 2015 and the previous eight years as executive vice chancellor, has overseen the greatest growth period in the university’s history, including a 58 percent increase in enrollment 10 years and the opening of 14 new properties, from research and academic facilities to residence halls and student centers. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranks UMass Lowell as the fastest-growing university in New England and No. 5 in the nation among public doctoral institutions.
“Being selected for the Women Who Mean Business award is a tremendous honor. I am proud to say that women make up more than half of our senior leadership team at UMass Lowell and that our world-class faculty includes many women who are leading the way in their fields, from robotics and engineering to social sciences and the arts,” said Moloney, who earned two degrees at the university. “UMass Lowell as an institution means business. We are educating innovators and skilled workers for the Commonwealth’s employers and using our expertise to help entrepreneurs get their ideas to the market.”
Under Moloney’s leadership, UMass Lowell has taken an entrepreneurial approach in educating students and its own operations, including growing its online and continuing education program to more than 25,000 enrollments annually, expanding use of facilities like the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell and UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center to host non-university events and looking to private donors to help support important initiatives like student scholarships and campus improvements through its first-ever comprehensive capital campaign, “Our Legacy, Our Place,” which has raised more than $110 million.
Across campus, students in all majors are being engaged in activities and contests teaching entrepreneurship skills they can apply in business and the community. Leading the way has been the DifferenceMaker Program, launched by Moloney in 2012, has seen more than 25,000 students from all majors learn such skills so they can apply them in business and the community. The results include 17 student-launched companies that have secured more than $500,000 in external funding and seven patents.
UMass Lowell’s efforts to expand entrepreneurship education also reach beyond the campus to the international higher education community. The university and the Deshpande Foundation co-founded the Deshpande Symposium on Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Higher Education in 2012, which annually brings hundreds of academics, policymakers and members of the business community to UMass Lowell to develop and discuss innovative strategies in teaching entrepreneurship.
The university is also working with entrepreneurs in the community, helping to build the Massachusetts economy, by providing faculty expertise and other resources, including access to four business incubators, two each operated by the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center, a joint venture with UMass’ Worcester campus, and the UMass Lowell Innovation Hub, which recently expanded to the university’s satellite campus in downtown Haverhill.
UMass Lowell, which was recently ranked No. 4 among the Top 100 Women-Led Businesses in Massachusetts and the top university on the list, delivers more than $921 million in annual positive economic impact to the region. It is educating workers for the Commonwealth’s employers through excellence in academics – U.S. News & World Report ranks UMass Lowell among the top 100 public universities in the nation – and hands-on learning including co-ops and internships.
UMass Lowell is among the top universities in the nation for return on investment and alumni, 56,000 of whom live in Massachusetts, earn the highest average starting and mid-career salaries among graduates of New England public research universities, according to PayScale.com.
UMass Lowell is a national research university located on a high-energy campus in the heart of a global community. The university offers its more than 18,000 students bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in business, education, engineering, fine arts, health, humanities, sciences and social sciences. UMass Lowell delivers high-quality educational programs, vigorous hands-on learning and personal attention from leading faculty and staff, all of which prepare graduates to be ready for work, for life and for all the world offers. www.uml.edu