WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume and David Trone met Wednesday in the U.S. Capitol with Dr. Jay Perman, University System of Maryland (USM) Chancellor; Dr. Bruce Jarrell, University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) President, and Dr. Valerie Sheares Ashby, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) President. The meeting provided an opportunity to discuss the state of USM institutions in Maryland and potential issues requiring federal action, including those to support the system’s implementation of the Vision 2030: From Excellence to Preeminence strategic plan. Congressman-elect Glenn Ivey also participated in the meeting.
“As senator, it is a privilege to represent each sector of higher education in Maryland, including our public, four-year institutions within USM,” said Senator Cardin. “We recognize that each of these schools provide Marylanders with access to a high-quality, affordable public education. As the System works to execute the Vision 2030 plan to provide Maryland’s growing and diversifying student populations with a more student-centered perspective, Team Maryland will continue to partner with the USM leadership and all campuses to ensure adequate resources are available to continue empowering our students and improving our local communities.”
“Maryland’s public university system is among the best in the world. It has nurtured leading minds in every academic and professional field, from business and the sciences to the arts and public service,” said Senator Van Hollen. “My colleagues and I on Federal Team Maryland are committed to providing the necessary support to keep USM schools strong and growing, including by working to secure funding for their innovative research efforts and helping to ensure the promise of an affordable higher education is attainable for all Marylanders – no matter their background or zip code. Working together, we can open more doors to opportunity for our students and shape a brighter future for our state and country.”
“Team Maryland is blessed to represent quality academic institutions that help produce outstanding leaders that our nation needs,” said Congressman Hoyer. “I am proud to represent University System of Maryland (USM) schools, especially Bowie State University and the University of Maryland Global Campus, and I was pleased to meet with USM leadership today. I will continue to work alongside my colleagues in the Federal Delegation to support our universities and their partners with the tools they need to invest in their campuses and help set our students up for success.”
“As a Terp with a law degree from the University of Baltimore, I am proud of the close partnership between the Maryland delegation and the University System of Maryland and the work we do to secure federal investments for nation-leading institutions like ours,” Congressman Ruppersberger said. “Today, I was particularly excited to hear more about the System’s strategic plan to recruit a more diverse pipeline of students, especially in the cybersecurity and STEM fields, so that Maryland’s higher education institutions remain among the best in the country.”
“Maryland is proud of our excellent public university system. USM provides quality higher education for Maryland’s students and promotes innovative research while lifting up our local economy,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “Team Maryland stands ready to deliver robust federal resources that build on the American Rescue Plan to help USM meet the needs of its students, expand its programs and build a strong, diverse workforce pipeline. I will continue working to ensure that every individual has the opportunity to reach their full potential by making college more affordable and accessible.”
“Setting up all students for success is of the utmost importance to me. With various USM institutions in my Congressional District, it is critical to have direct and ongoing conversations with these key educational leaders so that my priorities and work in Congress are clear to them,” said Congressman Mfume, a member of the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee. “I look forward to a continued partnership with USM and expanding opportunities together.”
“Maryland continues to offer its students a world-class education, training America’s next generation of leaders and investing in our future. It’s a responsibility we don’t take for granted. The Vision 2030 plan moves the ball forward by aligning our higher ed curriculums with real-world, in-demand skillsets in today’s workforce,” said Congressman Trone. “As a businessman, I know this plan will set our students up for success in their careers. As a Congressman, I’m proud to work with the University System of Maryland and my colleagues to get the job done for Marylanders.”
“The University System of Maryland is one of the premier educational institutions in our nation. It brings me great pride to be the member of Congress who represents the flagship at College Park. With that pride comes responsibility to work my hardest with Federal team Maryland to help keep the promise of a world class education not only at College Park but also at Bowie State, UMES and all our USM member institutions,” said Congressman-elect Glenn Ivey. “Visiting with the leadership paves a pathway of possibilities now and the future and I look forward to building on the great strides federal, state, and local leaders have taken in building a brighter future for all of our higher education students.”
“It’s always an honor to meet with Maryland’s congressional delegation,” said Chancellor Perman. “Maryland is privileged to have a delegation absolutely committed to the premise—and promise—of public higher education, whose members understand the importance of our mission and the complexities of our work, and who advance that work with federal support. I was delighted to speak with the delegation about the University System’s strategic priorities and to place special emphasis on access and affordability—making sure that any student in Maryland who wants a college education can get one and can be successful on that journey.”
“I was energized by the engaging conversation with our Senators and Congressmen on topics that are critical to USM and UMBC including access and affordability, diversity and inclusion, and research,” UMBC President Sheares Ashby said. “I look forward to partnering with our delegation on the challenges and opportunities for public education in Maryland.”
“The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) strongly applauds the delegation’s efforts to secure funding for the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H) as we continue to expand the scope and impact biomedical research here in Baltimore,” said UMB President Jarrell. “The synergy of research initiatives supported by ARPA-H and NIH – located together, here in Maryland – would usher in an exciting era of discovery and innovation in the health sciences.”
The USM comprises 12 institutions: Bowie State University; Coppin State University; Frostburg State University; Salisbury University; Towson University; the University of Baltimore; the University of Maryland, Baltimore; the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science; the University of Maryland, College Park; the University of Maryland Eastern Shore; and the University of Maryland Global Campus. The USM also includes three regional centers—the Universities at Shady Grove, the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown, and the University System of Maryland at Southern Maryland—at which USM universities offer upper-division undergraduate and graduate courses.
USM is one of the largest and most diverse public university systems which includes three prominent HBCUs and one of the nation’s largest online universities. The 12 institutions enroll nearly 165,000 students, employ more than 40,000 faculty and staff, and have a combined nearly 1 million living alumni. Since 2010, USM grew by nearly 17,000 students, more than the populations of Bowie State and Salisbury Universities combined. Long term, USM anticipates that their growth will climb by another 10,000 students over the next ten years, more than the current combined student bodies of Salisbury and Coppin State Universities. To learn about the new USM Strategic Plan, “Vision 2030: From Excellence to Preeminence,” visit https://www.usmd.edu/vision2030/.