Designer Sees Lift to U.S. Education, Economy and Spirits in Vision of New, University of Fall River

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New England-based graphic designer/artist George Delany imagines leading 21st century educational institution rising upon the eastern banks of upper Narragansett Bay: Welcome to the University of Fall River.

Graphic designer/artist George Delany is offering his idea of what a new, 21st century, world-class university in the City of Fall River, Massachusetts might look like. The core educational concept comprising the fictional University consolidates the best of western education with science, technology, and culture, mixed with a global community of thinkers, technologists, artists, theologians, writers, designers, sociologists, cultural anthropologists, product developers and many other professionals. Such an institution can lead the way, he believes, in graduating students prepared "to repair, restore and nurture the world" while encouraging and promoting the prosperity of civilization.

Situated on a southwest-facing hill along the upper reaches of Narragansett Bay, Fall River has access to almost unlimited sources of energy deriving from wind, water and sun. Mr. Delany sees this circumstance alone as the driving force in the creation of such an educational institution. "The concept of an urban, net-energy-zero institution like this gets me jazzed," he admits.

In his vision of the school, the University of Fall River takes advantage of abundant mill space as its home. Historically, over the course of the 19th century, spacious mills were first constructed to help Fall River become one of the country's wealthiest cities, a world leader in the cotton textile industry. As this industry has been lost, the City has fallen on hard times. Fall River is now wrestling with a recovery. (,_Massachusetts)

Currently, mill buildings are home to many small businesses in the city. Many are underutilized and considered "dinosaurs," especially in an era of increasingly expensive heating fuel. As a designer, Mr. Delany is proposing a solution to what he calls, "this enviable problem."

Mr. Delany believes such a long-term project will prove useful not only to the immediate region, but to the country. "This would give the country a huge lift," he says. "It would call upon our imagination, resourcefulness, intelligence, and make possible something wonderful to build."

"What the University of Fall River embodies that is different is a contemporary, better-integrated way for students to create and sustain their lives, interconnected with the concerns of people all over the world who participate in the same drama, albeit from a multitude of differing perspectives, sharing similar goals, aspirations, and dare-I-say, values."

In attempting to graphically express his idea, Mr. Delany took a series of digital photos of the city. He has compiled them into a calendar called, "University of Fall River, the Premiere 21st Century Institution of Higher Learning." Subtitled, "New Visions of Fall River."

Mr. Delany acknowledges this as a large undertaking. "Yes, at present, it's a pipe-dream. But what we need right now is just this kind of initiative, the undertaking of a dream. Recall the old west as the 'New Frontier,' with all the uncertain adventure and promise it held for a young country. This sort of initiative lives in one of the New Frontiers of the 21st century. It is exciting."

"If one imagines this project to be one in which, say, 20 buildings could be brought together at a cost of $1-2 million per building, you can begin to get a handle on costs. I believe this can be achieved by personal and corporate philanthropy… to create a powerful, new, private institution, focused on the future as it unfolds, beginning right now. This would be my choice as a way to go. The reward will be commensurately great," he asserts.

"There are downsides, no-doubt. But what we stand to learn about ourselves, our world and our prosperity in this new and challenging century is far greater than dollars," he opines. "The point is, in Fall River, like the Braga Bridge itself, we have through the University, a means of building new bridges among all peoples of the world. This is fitting for a city like Fall River, a great immigrant locality. And this could help us learn more about how to live in harmony with our earth and with each other. It is a new time, a new place. This is a new opportunity. If this city's motto is, 'We'll Try,' then I think we ought to get to it."

About aaaForay, Inc., Graphic Communications ( aaaForay provides strategic design consultation, brand identity, web, corporate communications, packaging, book, signage and assorted new product design to a variety of small, emerging and leading companies in the region.

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George Delany
aaaForay, Inc. (Graphic Communications)
(508) 252-3425
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