NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Amesbury Street Property Donated

Louise Haffner Fournier’s family make donation


The Louise Haffner Fournier Education Center on Amesbury Street on the Lawrence Campus has gone from a rented building to a building that is now owned by NECC through a donation from the EMLO Realty Trust, which is under the direction of Joanne Fournier and the Fournier Family.

A unanimous vote from the board of Trustees brought the donation into reality.  

Kelsey Terry, a recent graduate of NECC and the Student Member of the Board of Trustees for the school year 2015-2016 said, “As I leave Northern Essex, I am glad that this happened while I was a Student Trustee. It is nice to have Northern Essex own the building that is worth so much.”

Joanne Fournier and her husband have been supporting NECC for many years. Fournier has been on the board of the Women of NECC since the group’s inception in 1996, said Jean Poth, the Vice President of Institutional Advancement.

Journalism major Christina Hillner said, “It shows that there are good people out there still. They care what is happening here at NECC, and they prove it with donations like the Fournier building.”

“The estimated value of the property is $1.45 million. The property includes three parcels of land totaling 39,444 square feet and two adjoined buildings totaling 24,008 square feet. It features a 1,500 square foot general science lab built in 2012, as well as classrooms, office and community spaces,” said Poth. “The two labs in the NECC/Fournier Educational Building are state-of-the-art and they were completed in the fall of 2013 and funded through the assistance of a grant and a private donor.”

Some students are excited to see Northern Essex expand in Lawrence. Alba Diaz, a longtime resident of Lawrence and a Business Transfer student, said, “I think this is a great thing, it helps to make Lawrence improve as a city.“

“There is a shining star showing in the city, and that is NECC. I could not be more proud to attend school here in my city and see the transformation that is taking shape,” said Diaz.

Theatre major Nate Miller said, “I was new to the Lawrence campus this semester and I also was an Orientation Leader, so I had to learn about all the building in Lawrence. It was nice to start saying it was our building due to a donation. It is a proud feeling.”

Jasmine Polanco, a Criminal Justice major, said, “I think its great because it shows the school wanting to expand more throughout the city.”

Polanco still had some questions that remain unanswered about how any future construction will affect school. She wondered if the classes that remain there are going to be the same.

The Louise Haffner Fournier Education Center became part of the Northern Essex community in 1999, when classes began to grow in Lawrence and the Dimitry Building was no longer big enough to house all classes. When the property first opened, it automatically allowed student growth in credited classes.