University inks deal with Royal Caribbean

Photo courtesy of Media Relations.

Brandon Wise/ Editor-in-Chief

The University and Royal Caribbean Ltd. made their partnership official on Dec. 11 by signing a contract.

The deal allows Royal Caribbean to break ground on their new facility at Biscayne Bay Campus.

Photo Courtesy of Media Relations.

Renderings of future Royal Caribbean facility at Biscayne Bay Campus. Images courtesy of Media Relations.

“Public-private partnerships such as this one are essential to the vitality of our university and our community. This is win-win for our students and for Royal Caribbean,” said president Mark B. Rosenberg in a press release.

“Through this innovative relationship with industry leader Royal Caribbean, our students are going to gain access to this fantastic facility and internship opportunities with some of the best talent in the business.”

In September 2012, the University published an invitation to negotiate with the company to build and operate a production, rehearsal and performance facility at BBC.  The 130,000-square-foot, $20 million facility is expected to open in January 2015.

It is unclear how this will affect student housing life at the Biscayne Bay Campus.

According to a powerpoint presentation obtained by Student Media, Royal Caribbean will invest $6.5 million into renovating the current Bay Vista facilities to provide housing for RCL employees.

In 2008, Architects and Engineers conducted an assessment of Bay Vista and reported $12.5 million in and building deficiencies. They also noted $2.5 million in amenity improvements, along with a recommendation that the investment could not be justified.

The project may displace Bay Vista residents for at least a year, but the University and its new partner remain optimistic.

“Royal Caribbean considers South Florida home, and what better way to give back to the community than to be able to enrich the education of FIU students,” said Richard Fain, chairman and chief executive officer of Royal Caribbean.

The new facility is expected to feature a state-of-the-art rigging system, a 300-seat black box theater and 20,000 square feet dedicated to costume creation and storage.

The partnership provides Royal Caribbean with the opportunity to help train FIU students in other areas of the business through internships in operations and management, according to a press release.

The partnership will open extraordinary opportunities for students and faculty in the College of Architecture and the Arts and the Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, including 20 internships (corporate and shipboard), access to the unique training facility and access to data and other proprietary information to be used for research purposes, according to the press release.


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