Excitement about the Ernest C. Trefz School of Business has been mounting since construction crews began erecting the gleaming new facility at 230 Park Avenue on the University of Bridgeport campus, but the wait will soon be over.

The school’s official ribbon cutting takes place at 11 a.m., Tuesday, September 9.

UB alumni Marian Heard ’63 and trustee Thomas O’Hara ’84, who generously provided for the school’s Jacobson Wing Lobby and Raymond O’Hara Auditorium, will be in attendance.

They will be joined by dignitaries Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman, State Senator Andres Ayala Jr., Representative Ezequiel Santiago, and Bridgeport City Council Representatives Denese Taylor-Moye and Jack Banta.

David E.A. Carson, former CEO of People’s United Bank, will deliver the ribbon cutting tribute to Ernest C. Trefz, a longtime supporter and trustee of the University, for whom the school is named.

The son of immigrants, Mr. Trefz accompanied his German father as he delivered meat and cold cuts to family-run grocery stores in Bridgeport. Though he could not afford to attend college as a young man, Mr. Trefz nonetheless learned much by studying his father’s customers, who staked life savings to open shops and build a better life in America. Fueled with entrepreneurial drive, Mr. Trefz and his brother developed the state’s first McDonalds restaurant in Hamden, Connecticut, and many others in ensuing years. He is currently CEO of Trefz Corp.

Fittingly, the business school not only bears Mr. Trefz’s name: it is putting academic focus on entrepreneurship and the kind of skills Mr. Trefz instincitvely honed over his lifetime as one of the region’s most successful businessmen. The Trefz School of Business recently hired seven faculty members, all of whom have practical, real-world experience working in business. It also launched its online MBA program in January 2014, with input from leaders from the state’s corporate community.

“With its official opening, the Ernest C. Trefz School of Business takes us into the forefront of the business world so our students can achieve success in today’s competitive environment,” said UB President Neil A. Salonen. “As a friend, Mr. Trefz has supported UB and encouraged its success. As a UB trustee, his invaluable counsel has guided the University for over 30 years. As a businessman, he has inspired many well beyond the boundaries of this campus. We are proud to honor his legacy and his vision.”

Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, lgeary@bridgeport.edu