Mayor Ted Yates Earns Friend of the Campus Award from Kent State Geauga and Regional Academic Center
In the natural realm, a mutualistic relationship defines two organisms of different species that work together, each benefiting from the relationship. In the Twinsburg community, a type of mutualism is thriving between Kent State University Regional Academic Center and the City of Twinsburg with Mayor Ted Yates.
In recognition of the City of Twinsburg’s exemplary service and support to the university's mission, its faculty, students, prospective students, and programs, a Friend of the Campus Award was presented to Mayor Yates as part of Spring 2019 commencement ceremonies. The highest honor presented annually to non-students, the award recognizes those who work to improve the community and who support the university’s mission to provide quality education to the region.
Mayor Yates sees this hand-in-hand relationship as one in which a rising tide lifts all boats. In other words, as the City of Twinsburg and the Kent State Regional Academic Center partner together on shared initiatives, the entire community — from businesspeople to service organizations to individual residents — also benefit.
Mayor Yates is a Kent State University alum with a BA in Accounting. He went on to earn an MBA and law degree from Cleveland State University. “It’s been a priority for me to showcase the regional campus of Kent State as much as we can,” Yates says. “We want to be known as a college town because the Regional Academic Center is such a great facility in our city. Bringing academics at the collegiate level into town has created a special atmosphere in Twinsburg.”
Several exciting initiatives have resulted from this mutually beneficial partnership. For instance, the campus’ Kent State of Wellness priority is being realized at the municipally-owned Twinsburg Fitness Center where regional campus students, faculty, and staff now have free, 24-hour access with membership.
Future plans call for “redevelopment of our downtown area that will bring more people to the campus,” the mayor says. Within 12-18 months, a new retail/residential development project will be identified for southeast of the downtown square along a corridor to the Regional Academic Center.
As a member of the Kent State Regional Academic Center Advisory Board, Mayor Yates supports the Regional Academic Center by advocating for its mission throughout the Twinsburg area. In this role, he is looking for ways to help the campus to expand.
“We want to create more value for the non-traditional student,” he says. “We don’t have much more room to expand course offerings at this point, but we would like to enhance the academic program to expand the campus’ four-year degree offerings.”
Kent State Regional Academic Center in Twinsburg is a location of Kent State University Geauga Campus in Burton. Since its inception in 1991, it has played a vital role in enriching the surrounding community with course offerings in business, accounting, computer science, and other programs ranging from associate to master’s degrees, as well as executive and workforce development programs. The Regional Academic Center opened its 44,000-square-foot, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified building on Creekside Road in 2012.
As a recipient of the Friend of the Campus award on behalf of the City of Twinsburg, Mayor Yates says, “It was an honor to be recognized for our working relationship with Kent State Regional Academic Center, and I look forward to many more years of working together for the betterment of our community.”