Presented to the Accomack County Board of Supervisors May 15, 2019

Toward the Establishment of a 4-year Educational Institution (Shore U) in Accomack County on the Eastern Shore of Virginia

WHEREAS, Rural Virginia comes dead last in the USA education rankings, and

WHEREAS, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, the most attractive part of Rural Virginia, lacks a four-year institution of higher education (Shore U) and

WHEREAS, such institutions are widely recognized as major Economic, Cultural, and Educational assets for such rural areas, and

WHEREAS, the Governor’s Plan for Transforming Higher Education states that “higher education is the lynchpin of the New Virginia Economy, producing a return on investment greater than any other public investment…each dollar spent on Virginia’s public higher education system produces $21 in greater gross state product...”

WHEREAS, the University of the Eastern Shore of Virginia Foundation (the Foundation) has estimated that Shore U could grow to approximately 2,000 students, which leads to benefits of $100 Million per year cash flow and 1,000 jobs (similar to benefits realized by UVA’s College at Wise),

WHEREAS, there is no other identified investment on the Shore that would produce the same level of economic, educational, and cultural benefits as Shore U,

WHEREAS, the history of the development of public institutions in the Commonwealth and elsewhere often begins with the designation and donation of land,

WHEREAS, the Accomack Industrial/Business Park in Melfa has enjoyed little usage over the decades, nor has near-term prospects for development,

WHEREAS, this land is suitable for use by Shore U having in place water and sewer, electricity, and fiber, and is located next to the Eastern Shore Community College which would engender cooperation between ESCC and Shore U,

WHEREAS, the Foundation undertakes to publicize this land globally to recruit a world-class Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Health (STEM-H) University to set up a Branch Campus on it,

THEREFORE, as it is altogether fitting that the Economic Development Authority of Accomack County agree to a commitment of 200 acres of said land for the purpose of locating Shore U there, be it

RESOLVED, that the Supervisors of Accomack County proclaim that they do entrust such 200 acres to the Foundation for the purpose of locating Shore U there and that the donation of said land be available for a period of up to 10 years for such development.

Terry MalarkeyComment