April 9, 2019

Presenting the Business Innovation Hub

A new, top-tier facility for the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst

Like many a new University of Massachusetts Amherst graduate, the new Business Innovation Hub at the Isenberg School of Management makes a powerful first impression. From its gleaming, curved copper and glass exterior to its high-tech classrooms, the building provides an outstanding home for the highly ranked business school.

Connected to the existing Isenberg building, the Hub adds 70,000 square feet to the school’s facilities. It opened for business at the start of the spring semester and features classrooms, conference rooms, faculty and administrative offices, a Business Analytics Lab with multiple Bloomberg terminals, and the greatly expanded Chase Career Center. In its sprawling, light-filled learning commons, some of the tags are still on the soft chairs, but meeting up at the space with a coffee from the Hub café has already become a habit for many students.
Interim Dean Tom Moliterno lists four of the top ways the Business Innovation Hub enhances the Isenberg School of Management. First, he says, “We are training students to work in modern organizations that do business in a collaborative way. Our new space allows us to do that.” The Hub boasts numerous breakout rooms and lounges suitable for both casual brainstorming and formal group projects.

Second, he says, “Isenberg enrollment has increased 50 percent over last 10 years. Now we have space that is the right size for us.”

Third, Moliterno points out, the addition unites all seven of Isenberg’s academic departments under the same roof.

Fourth, he says, “As a top 30-public business school, the new building allows Isenberg to stay competitive and continue to attract great students.”

Jake Barnes ’20, a sport management and marketing double major who works as a receptionist for the Chase Career Center, says the new building is already enhancing the school’s reputation.

“For students and visitors, it’s a ‘wow!’”

“For students and visitors, it’s a ‘wow!’” Barnes says. “It’s phenomenal space. The Chase Center is significantly larger than it was and gives us capacity for interview rooms, breakout rooms, and offices for our career coaches. The interview rooms will be in great demand during hiring season. TD Bank is here recruiting today,” he pointed out.

Sisters from Millbury, Mass., Lauren Plante, a senior management major, and first-year student Madison Plante, meet up at the learning commons regularly. On a recent Thursday morning, they sat at a round table crowded with their laptops, coffees, books, and papers. Lauren was studying for a retail management exam and Madison was working on an essay for economics class.

Lauren was enthusiastic about the Hub. She said, “It’s a fantastic addition that is a great reflection on Isenberg and its students. I’m sorry I won’t be here longer to enjoy it like my sister.”

Madison Plante plans to hang out and study at the Hub for years to come. As her sister headed off for her 11:30 exam, she observed, “She studies a lot; she’ll do fine.”