Throughout the course of its nearly 170-year history, the University of Mount Union has fostered strong ties with the City of Alliance including its businesses, schools and organizations.
The past decade has seen an increased focus on building these ties as a means of carrying out the institution’s mission to prepare students for fulfilling lives, meaningful work and responsible citizenship. The University and the city have formed a true partnership to carry out endeavors of mutual benefit in an effort to enhance the economic development of Alliance, cultural enrichment of its residents and support offered by its local charitable organizations.
In addition, the University works closely with partners in the city and beyond to assist in secondary to postsecondary transitions, provide K-12 educational support and secure practical experiences for Mount Union students through clinicals, practicums and internships.
Some recent partnerships include:
- Investment Alliance Award Program
- A sustainability partnership
- The Glamorgan Castle lakes clean up
- One Book, One Community
- The Alliance Farmers’ Market
- The Union Avenue corridor project
- Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service
- Downtown revitalization effort
- Mount Union Gateway
- Synergy Alliance
- The Early Childhood Education Alliance
- Community Thanksgiving Meal
In an effort to battle “brain drain” in the area and keep Alliance’s best and brightest in the city, the University of Mount Union launched a new scholarship initiative, Investment Alliance, in the fall of 2014. Initiated in cooperation with the Alliance City Schools, the scholarship program provides renewable full-tuition scholarships to the top 15 students of each Alliance High School graduating class who meet the eligibility requirements of the program. To date, the University has welcomed more than 30 award recipients to campus, and during Mount Union’s 2018 Commencement the first seven students in the program earned their college degrees.
In addition to benefiting the community by remaining in Alliance during their college years, students earning Investment Alliance awards further impact the city by giving back to their home community through service initiatives while students at Mount Union. They also serve as Mount Union ambassadors when called upon by the University to do so and benefit from shadowing, networking and internship opportunities with Alliance area businesses and organizations through the efforts of local business leaders and the Alliance Area Development.
In an effort to provide students and the Alliance community with additional retail outlets and eateries on the perimeter of campus, the University of Mount Union partnered with area developers DeHoff Development Company and Alliance Ventures to make the Mount Union Gateway a reality. The property, located on State Street across from the University, is owned by the institution and is being leased to the developers, who have led the efforts to design and construct the gateway and secure tenants.
The first phase of the project was completed over the summer of 2015 in time for the start of classes in the fall. Tenants include Farmer’s National Bank, Buffalo Wild Wings, Orange Leaf Yogurt, T-Mobile, Papa Gyro’s, Four Kids Coffee The Crossing and BOGO Pizza.
Each year, hundreds of students, faculty and staff members along with members of the Alliance area community participate in the University of Mount Union’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service in the Alliance community. Through the effort, numerous community organizations are able to accomplish tasks with the help of volunteers that otherwise may have been impossible or overwhelming.
In the past, volunteers have supported a host of charitable organizations in the community including Stuckey Family Interfaith Childhood Development Center, Meals on Wheels, Alliance Area Domestic Violence Shelter, Feed My Sheep Ministries, Men’s Challenge of Alliance, Alliance Community Pantry, American Red Cross, Alliance Historical Society, Rodman Public Library, Huston-Brumbaugh Nature Center, Habitat for Humanity of Salem, Bel Air Senior Living, Sterling House, Roselawn Terrace, Alliance for Children and Families, Alliance Friends Church, The Stock Pile, Christ United Methodist Church/Alliance Area Habitat for Humanity and Beechcreek Botanical Garden among others.