All posts by: Catalina Sofia Dansberger Duque


China Hands typing on a lap top with a red background and gold stars China

China turns to private hackers as it cracks down on online activists on Tiananmen Square anniversary

“As a China expert and open-source researcher, I believe the latest revelations draw the curtain back on a contractor ecosystem in which government officials and commercial operators are increasingly working together,” explains Christopher K. Tong, associate professor of Asian studies at the University of Maryland Baltimore County. ” In short, Beijing is outsourcing its cyber operations to a patchwork army of private-sector hackers who offer their services out of a mix of nationalism and profit.” Continue Reading China turns to private hackers as it cracks down on online activists on Tiananmen Square anniversary

A collage of images showing students traveling with mentors and teaching with children

A Journey of Growth

International travel offers ample opportunities to stretch yourself—one minute you may be the expert and the next, completely clueless about how something works. Retrievers currently in the Fulbright U.S. Student Program—teaching English or researching around the globe—find themselves oscillating between their teaching and student roles on a daily or hourly basis. By engaging their host communities through openness and cultural humility (and many shared cups of tea or coffee), these Fulbrighters are finding their balance along the way. Continue Reading A Journey of Growth

Peter Wilschke and a professor stand on each side of a research poster

Peter Wilschke ’24, political science and economics, publishes empirical research as the sole author in the State and Local Government Review journal

“Once you take these courses, your world is kind of open to how empirical research is actually conducted in those fields. Without these classes I would not have known where to start,” says Wilschke. He advises students to approach empirical work as a combination of two things. “You have to care about your research question to push through all the time and hard work needed,” says UMBC’s Peter Wilschke ’24, political science and economics, “and put to work all the research skills you’ve learned to answer a question that needs to be answered, that policymakers can use to improve people’s lives.” Continue Reading Peter Wilschke ’24, political science and economics, publishes empirical research as the sole author in the State and Local Government Review journal

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Alberta Ndille ’24—transfer student with an eye for public health and social justice

“Internationalization was a big influence on my choice of major. I’m interested in global health and epidemiological research. Social determinants of health caught my attention. Living in the U.S., I saw a very different approach to maternal health than in Cameroon,” says UMBC senior Alberta Ndille. “I want to research the barriers to maternal healthcare in Cameroon and maybe that can help other countries as well.” Continue Reading Alberta Ndille ’24—transfer student with an eye for public health and social justice

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UMBC’s first Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence shares unique research on neurodiversity in language teaching and learning

“If students have not experienced an inclusive classroom, they may be afraid of managing an inclusive classroom when they become teachers,” says Jules Buendgens-Kosten, a research assistant at the Institute of English and American Studies at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Germany and UMBC’s first Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence , whose research helps prepare educators to teach students with dyslexia, ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, and other minority neurotypes. “One way to reduce this fear is giving teachers tools for best practices on neurodiversity in teaching and learning.” Continue Reading UMBC’s first Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence shares unique research on neurodiversity in language teaching and learning

A writer sits at their desk Guggenheim

Ryan Bloom, English, receives 2024 Guggenheim Fellowship for translation

UMBC’s Ryan Bloom, senior lecturer in English, has received the 2024 Guggenheim Fellowship for translation to work on the first complete edition of the French-Algerian author Albert Camus’s notebooks, journals, and other works. This year, 188 grants were awarded from more than 3,000 applicants from over 52 academic disciplines across the U.S. and Canada. Fellows are provided funding to freely pursue their creative projects through their unique process without any special conditions.  Continue Reading Ryan Bloom, English, receives 2024 Guggenheim Fellowship for translation

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Students inspire William Blake’s paper on constitutional amendments in the prestigious ‘American Political Science Review’ 

The American Political Science Review, the leading political science peer-reviewed journal,  published “Social Capital, Institutional Rules, and Constitutional Amendment Rates,” a new research article by lead author William Blake, associate professor and associate chair of political science. at UMBC The study addressed why some constitutions are amended more frequently than others. Continue Reading Students inspire William Blake’s paper on constitutional amendments in the prestigious ‘American Political Science Review’ 

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Nancy Kusmaul, social work, receives “Outstanding Individual in Academia” award from the Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Policy 

UMBC’s Nancy Kusmaul, associate professor of social work, a scholar and advocate for the rights of older adults and professional caregivers, received the “Outstanding Individual in Academia” award from the Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Policy in March 2024 at a ceremony on Capitol Hill. Kusmaul’s work is informed by her 10 years of experience as a social worker and over a decade of novel scholarship.  Continue Reading Nancy Kusmaul, social work, receives “Outstanding Individual in Academia” award from the Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Policy 

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The Mellon Foundation awards UMBC’s Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies department $100,000 as part of its ‘Affirming Multivocal Humanities’ initiative

UMBC’s Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies (GWST) department has received a $100,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation to implement its Advancing Gender and Sexuality Studies in Community project. UMBC is one of 95 public colleges and university programs leading research on race, ethnicity, gender, or sexuality to receive funding from the Mellon Foundation’s $18 million “Affirming Multivocal Humanities” initiative. Continue Reading The Mellon Foundation awards UMBC’s Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies department $100,000 as part of its ‘Affirming Multivocal Humanities’ initiative

A group of students standing behind a wood sign with the words South Africa written in white on an education abroad trip

CAHSS dean establishes a $400,000 education abroad scholarship  

UMBC CAHSS Dean’s Education Abroad Scholarship. The scholarship guarantees $100,000 per year for the next four years to help offset the financial costs of studying abroad. Undergraduate and graduate students with at least one major in CAHSS, and who need additional financial support to study abroad can apply for awards ranging from $1,500 – $5,000. The inaugural round of scholarships have been awarded to 24. Continue Reading CAHSS dean establishes a $400,000 education abroad scholarship  

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Mellon Foundation grants CAHSS $750K to establish Global Asias Initiative 

Kimberly Moffitt, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Socials Sciences, and co-pi Tamara Bhalla, associate professor of American studies and director of the Asian American studies minor, have been awarded a $750K grant from the Mellon Foundation to establish the Global Asias Initiative. Continue Reading Mellon Foundation grants CAHSS $750K to establish Global Asias Initiative 

Urban development simulation helps students learn how to balance growth, equity, and environmental sustainability 

“I could lecture students about the ethical, financial, structural, and environmental issues cities grapple with in the urban development process, but urban planning simulations create an entirely different learning process,” says Eric Stokan, associate professor of political science who partnered with the Urban Land Institute for this project. Continue Reading Urban development simulation helps students learn how to balance growth, equity, and environmental sustainability 

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