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The College Tour series on Amazon spotlights the UMBC student experience

The College Tour, an Emmy-nominated and award-winning TV series now streaming on Amazon, offers prospective college students and their families an opportunity to get a first-hand glimpse of colleges and universities across the country, with students as the tour guides. Through interviews with students, prospective students from around the world explore academic, social, cultural, and campus life at these institutions. The latest season highlights UMBC in a full, hour-long episode.

UMBC faculty and staff award recipients place community at the core of their success

At UMBC’s 2022 Presidential Faculty and Staff Awards (PFASA), Tamra Mendelson said she loves “getting to the core of a concept” in her research and teaching. As awardee after awardee addressed the audience, both in person and online, it became clear that all shared the same “core concept” of UMBC: community.

UMBC’s Farah Helal, longtime student advocate, is named USM student regent

Farah Helal ’24, global studies and political science, is the newly appointed 2022 University System of Maryland (USM) student regent. “Student representatives provide educators and policymakers with the perspective needed to ensure the student voice is valued and understood throughout the decision-making process,” she says.

Valerie Sheares Ashby named next president of UMBC, arriving from Duke in August 2022

The University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents has appointed Valerie Sheares Ashby as the next president of UMBC. She will become UMBC’s sixth chief executive on August 1, 2022, following current UMBC President Freeman A. Hrabowski’s retirement from UMBC. She will be the first woman to serve in this role.

U.S. News names UMBC graduate programs among the nation’s best 

U.S. News announced its 2023 Best Graduate School rankings today, including outstanding UMBC graduate programs across all three colleges. Top fields where UMBC excels range from computer science and several types of engineering to psychology and statistics. Among UMBC’s 14 Best Graduate School rankings for 2023 are seven top-100 programs.

Ten million reads: UMBC researchers hit milestone in sharing knowledge through The Conversation

Articles on The Conversation offer context to current events, explain natural phenomena, introduce new research in an accessible way, and more. “The Conversation helps us contribute to our public service mission as a public university,” says Vice President for Research Karl Steiner. “This milestone underscores the importance of academic researchers actively participating in the public discourse of complex issues.”

$21M Sherman Family Foundation gift supports UMBC’s bold commitment to PreK-12 research, teaching, and learning

The largest gift in the history of UMBC—a $21 million donation from the Sherman Family Foundation—will dramatically expand the reach and impact of the university’s K-12 and early childhood education work. The transformational gift will provide funding to launch the Betsy & George Sherman Center as a national model to advance excellence in urban schools.

One-on-one: A conversation about UMBC’s global community

Praise Lasekan ‘25 checked off two major items from his to-do list this academic year: he traveled over 6,000 miles from Nigeria to the U.S. for the first time and he became a Retriever. Learn about his experience in a conversation with Adam Julian, UMBC’s director of international student and scholar services.

UMBC men’s swimming and diving recaptures America East 2022 Championship

For those who insist 13 is an unlucky number, UMBC men’s swimming and diving is here to prove otherwise. Last weekend, the Retrievers reclaimed the 2022 America East Championship title to win their 13th championship out of 15 appearances. UMBC women’s swimming and diving earned second place at their championship meet.

Pres. Hrabowski elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering

The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) announced the election of UMBC President Freeman A. Hrabowski, III as a member. This prestigious honor recognizes Pres. Hrabowski’s leadership in higher education—serving as president of UMBC for three decades and working to increase diversity in STEM fields, including engineering, at a national level.

Four students gather around monitors, with a professor and student sitting in the background.

UMBC ascends to the nation’s highest level as a research university

UMBC has officially reached the nation’s highest level of research performance. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education today announced that UMBC has been placed into the category of doctoral universities with very high research activity, popularly known as Research 1 (or R1). “This is an amazing accomplishment by faculty, staff, and administrative leaders who have built a research culture that nurtures undergraduate and graduate students,” says President Freeman Hrabowski. “This milestone reflects our commitment to excellence across the disciplines, from the humanities to the sciences.”

UMBC’s Top 12 Stories of 2021

While we can’t wait to see what memories we will make in 2022, let’s first take a look back at the milestones, breakthroughs, and student stories that shaped our UMBC community in 2021.

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