MC Germantown becomes a RISE Zone


A few weeks ago, Montgomery College made history by becoming the first school in Montgomery County to be designated as a RISE Zone.

RISE stands for the Regional Institution Strategic Enterprise Zone Program. Qualified institutions must apply to the state’s commerce department to become RISE zones. If they are approved, businesses and money in the college’s area get tax incentives to work towards expanding the college.

Martha Schoonmaker, Executive Director of PIC MC, states “The Germantown campus is an integrated academic business and research campus. We have parcels of land right here that are ready to go.”

The main area of the college that is directly affected by the RISE Zone designation is the Pinkney Innovation Complex for Science and Technology (PIC MC).

Another massive benefit, according to the PIC MC Germantown online book, is the tax-free exemptions and tax credits MC gets for having this designation, which in turn makes it easier to expand. With 28.2 acres of land, companies have the space to move onto the campus, which in turn brings revenue and job opportunities to Germantown.

A college’s RISE Zone status lasts for five years, after which there is a five-year renewal option. However, each county or municipality is only allowed three RISE Zone designations.According to the Maryland Department of Commerce, the other RISE Zones include Morgan State University, University of Maryland Baltimore, UMBC, the entire greater College Park area, Salisbury University. MC Germantown is the newest RISE Zone.