Mesa Close to Landing New University

January 04, 2012

The city of Mesa might be home to the newest campus of Benedictine University, a private Catholic school. Benedictine currently has two campuses in Illinois, as well as programs in China and Vietnam.

Benedictine University

Wednesday, officials from Benedictine and the city of Mesa announced that the university wants to launch a campus in downtown Mesa that could open in the fall of 2013. Benedictine plans to lease a city-owned former community center near Mesa Drive and Main Street. It’s projected that within ten years, enrollment will reach 1,500 students.

Mesa Mayor Scott Smith thinks the school will be a draw for many reasons: for students who want a Catholic education, and for potential job creators.

“It makes our community and our region even more attractive to those kinds of employers that are looking for qualified people, that are looking for...institutions they can build relationships with that will build a strong economy,” Smith said.

The city and the university hope to negotiate a 15-year lease for the space. The Mesa City Council will vote on the proposal this coming Monday. Mayor Smith says the city is still in talks to bring in other colleges and universities.

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