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Northern Maine university receives largest gift in history

October 25, 2018

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (AP) — A Maine university says it has received the largest one-time gift in its history, and it’s using the money to establish its first endowed chair.

University of Maine at Presque Isle says it received the $1 million gift from Mary Barton Akeley Smith. It says the money will be used to create the Dr. Robert Vinton Akeley Chair of Agricultural Science and Agribusiness, which is named after Smith’s father.

Smith is a benefactor who has supported Presque Isle area institutions over the years. The university says the new position will be a permanent faculty post in the school’s new Agricultural Science and Agribusiness program.

UMPI President Ray Rice says the gift is an “incredible milestone” for the university, which is located not far from northern Maine’s border with Canada.

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