The success of taco trucks and Soul Food pop-ups in post-Katrina New Orleans has raised complex questions about food truck regulation, worker rights, immigration issues, and local vs. tourist experiences that often pit these communities against each other. UMBC’s Sarah Fouts and local organizers Toya Ex Lewis and Fernando López are implementing Project Neutral Grounds to share these vendors’ experiences and histories.
Policy & Society
Nine recent UMBC graduates and alumni will soon travel to the UK, El Salvador, Kuwait, France, Colombia, Taiwan, South Korea, and Germany as 2022 Fulbright U.S. Student scholars. They include emerging leaders in education, astrophysics, cybersecurity, human rights, and more, and they are excited to explore difficult questions through fresh perspectives.
Trees supply a host of benefits for animals and people. However, new research led by Matthew Fagan finds that some trees planted in the tropics may be doing more harm than good. “Ecologists have been sounding the alarm on this for over a decade,” Fagan says. “But no one’s had a hard number about how much this is actually happening.”
Student teams recently gathered at Betamore, a Baltimore-based entrepreneurship and coworking space, to battle in the final round of UMBC’s annual Cangialosi Business Innovation Competition. This year’s competition included two distinct tracks: technology and innovation, and social impact. The top three ideas in each track received funding to help move their ventures forward.
Vandana Janeja and Christine Mallinson have received a two-year, $300,000 grant from NSF to study deepfakes, focusing on audio clips. Deepfakes are images, videos, and sounds that are developed using artificial intelligence, but that are designed to appear as real-life recordings. They can be highly deceiving for audiences, impacting public opinion and behavior.
“Dr. Musgrove’s selection for the Carnegie Fellowship is further confirmation of the great work happening in the humanities at UMBC,” says Kimberly Moffitt, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. “We are appreciative of Carnegie’s recognition of his work and of the human experience during such a moment in history.”
The notion of the “American dream”—that hard work can lead to social and economic mobility—has existed in the United States for centuries, and it has been disputed for almost as long. Pamela Bennett’s new book takes on this idea. Bennett, associate professor of public policy, explores some of the social, educational, and economic factors that impact the decisions that middle- and working-class parents make in hopes that their children can attain the “American dream.”
In addition to Haleemat Adekoya winning the Truman Scholarship, this is the second time that two UMBC students have been named finalists. “This national recognition highlights the fact that UMBC is indeed a magical place that fosters community leaders and passionate public servants, such as Haleemat,” says Rehman Liaqat ‘22, political science, a fellow finalist.
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.
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.