International Institute of Akron (IIA) will move its offices to the Summa – St. Thomas campus, at 20 Olive St., Suite 201, effective Oct. 1. Planning for the move has been under way for some time in response to the state of Ohio’s plan to reconfigure the intersection at the site of the Institute’s longstanding location on Tallmadge Avenue at Dayton Street.
The nonprofit offers refugee resettlement services, job placement, translation, English classes and other educational resources for immigrants and refugees. The North Hill neighborhood, where IIA resides, is home to residents from over 14 countries speaking more than 26 different languages, according to a recent IIA report, called “The North Hill Listening Project.”
“IIA has been a pillar of the North Hill community for over 100 years, and with the help of Mayor Horrigan, Executive Shapiro, Dr. Deveny and the Summa Health System Board of Directors, we are proud and grateful for the opportunity to remain in North Hill,” said Madhu Sharma, acting executive director for IIA. “We appreciate the patience of our clients and the community as we make this transition. Our services to the immigrant community will continue with minimal interruption.”
IIA will close the office at Tallmadge Avenue Sept. 24 and remain closed to complete the relocation. The new location will open to clients at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 1. A formal ribbon-cutting will be planned for a later date.
“The IIA Board appreciates the efforts of the IIA staff and community partners in making it possible for the Institute to relocate within North Hill,” said Karen Richter, IIA board president. “Finding the best location for the agency, its clients and the community was very important to us. The St. Thomas space offers a wonderful fit for the needs of IIA and its clients. With this move we begin a new chapter in the long history of this important community institution. We are so grateful for the ongoing support of our many community partners and are more committed than ever to our mission.”
“We are so grateful to have the International Institute as a vital community asset here in Akron,” said Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan, who also is a North Hill resident. “It was imperative that they remain close to their core clients in North Hill, and the community came together to assure that happened. I look forward to further strengthening our partnership to further grow this community together.”
For info, visit www.iiakron.org.