Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology
Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (BFIT) is a private college of engineering and industrial technologies in Boston, Massachusetts. It was established in 1908 with funds bequeathed in Benjamin Franklin's will.
Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology owes its existence to the vision of Benjamin Franklin. In a codicil to his will, dated 1789, Franklin established a 200-year plan for a sum totaling £1,000 (about $4,400 at the time, or about $112,000 in 2010 dollars) that he gave to the city of Boston, where he was born. For the first hundred years, the money was to serve as principal for loans to young workmen; at the end of that period, the fund's managers would divide the money, using approximately three-fourths for public works and maintaining the rest as a loan fund.
When the hundred-year interval had passed, Boston decided to use the money to establish a technical school. Aided by an additional gift from industrialist Andrew Carnegie and land donated by the city, BFIT opened its doors in 1908. A series of murals on campus were painted by Charles Mills.
In 2019, the Institute announced plans to sell its 3-building 1908 campus and look for a 30% larger facility. In September 2019, the Institute announced they will be moving to a new campus located on seven-tenths of an acre in the Dudley Square section of Roxbury (now renamed Nubian Square) to be closer to the neighborhoods where current students live. The new 85,000 square feet (7,900 m2) building is expected to open in the autumn of 2022.
In September 2020, the Boston Globe leaked that the institute was planning for a possible merger with the Wentworth Institute of Technology. The merger deal faced opposition among community members and city officials based on how the merger would affect Benjamin Franklin's ability to continue to serve low-income minority students, as well as the secretive nature of the merger negotiations themselves. In November 2020, the college's board of trustees voted to keep Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology independent and to discontinue any merger talks, according to a report in the Globe.
As of 2020[update], the school had approximately 525 students, with a 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio, and offered programs of study awarding certificates, associate degrees, and bachelor's degrees.
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