Life in Southern Maine

“The way life should be” is our state slogan, and you’ll notice that Maine life embraces seeming contradictions — down-to-earth yet exciting, gritty yet sophisticated. Naturally breathtaking and culturally fascinating, Maine is a special place that captures the heart and imagination. At UNE, you’ll live along a storied coastline, in a world-famous food and lifestyle destination. 

The Portland Head Light on the rocky coast of Maine overlooking the ocean


An illustration of the Commons tower on a coast

Home to UNE’s innovative coastal campus, this Maine city has a “swell of creative energy.”

Stretching from the storied beachside communities of Biddeford Pool and Fortunes Rocks, to the downtown district's shopping and cafes, Biddeford will keep you busy and entertained. With a population of about 23,000, Biddeford is right-sized for a college town — big enough to stay interesting and small enough to stay comfortable.

Explore downtown’s renovated mills and storefronts full of coffee shops, restaurants, and stores, and experience the many community arts and entertainment festivals from Downtown Art Walks, to WinterFest, to the renowned Franco-American cultural festival La Kermesse.

A 20-minute drive from Portland and a 90-minute drive from Boston, Biddeford is easily accessible by car and by the Amtrak Downeaster line.

Explore Life Outdoors On Our Biddeford Campus


icon of a stethascope

UNE’s health professions campus is located in America’s coolest small city and the best place to live on the east coast.

Portland is a historic and creative city famously known for its food, arts, and working waterfront. It’s also a healthcare hub — home to the largest medical center north of Boston. If any of this resonates with you, then Portland is calling your name.

UNE’s Portland campus is situated just outside of downtown among the residential Deering and Riverton neighborhoods. As a student, you’ll have ample opportunities to explore the city and live like a local. 

Take a study break and run or bike along the waterfront Back Cove with scenic views of the Portland skyline. After a busy school week, you can eat and drink your way through the cobblestone streets of the Old Port. Portland is four-season friendly with enough to keep you busy rain, shine, or snow.

A dental student stands at Widgery Wharf in downtown Portland, Maine
Brick buildings and cobblestone streets of downtown Portland, Maine

Discover Portland

Outdoor Adventure in Our Backyard

An illustration of a mountain range

From surfboard to snowboard, adventure awaits through the great outdoors when you live in Maine.

Oceanfront destinations along the southern Maine coast allow for endless beach walks and sunset moments. Rent a wetsuit and surfboard from UNE’s fitness centers and learn to surf. Go kayaking along the Saco River or in one of our state's many tranquil lakes. 

Take a weekend trip to Acadia National Park where you can hike and explore the rocky downeast coastline. UNE-sponsored trips to Acadia occur multiple times a year.

If you’re into skiing or snowboarding, take advantage of college discounts at nearby Pleasant Mountain (formerly Shawnee Peak), located less than an hour from Portland. Make sure to also explore some of the larger (and nationally ranked) resorts in western Maine and nearby New Hampshire.

Four students walking on the rocks along the ocean
Four U N E students on a ski trip
Two students on top of a mountain overlooking the ocean
A group of U N E students wearing helmets, life vests, and holding paddles