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.
Persistent. Innovative. Determined. These are the words UMBC’s commencement speakers returned to again and again to describe the Class of 2021. And despite a year of challenges—missing family and friends, technological frustrations, life lived through the computer screen—one of the resounding themes of this year’s Commencement ceremonies was gratitude.
On the back of every UMBC black and gold ID card is a guide to essential emergency resources, including numbers for health, counseling, sexual assault, and suicide prevention helplines. The new card design was the result of student advocacy through UMBC’s Retriever Courage initiative, seeking to better prevent and respond to sexual assault and violence. And the person who suggested that change is Autumn Cook, graduating this week, a tireless advocate for fellow UMBC students.