Susan Aldridge Steps Down from UMUC Presidency;
Javier Miyares Continues as Acting President

ADELPHI, MD (March 22, 2012)-Susan C. Aldridge, president of University of Maryland University College  (UMUC) since February 1, 2006, announced that she is resigning from her position, effective March 31, 2012. An institution of the University System of Maryland (USM), UMUC offers online and on-site programs in 20 locations throughout Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia, and in more than 27 countries.

In making her announcement, Aldridge said: "Given all that we have accomplished over the past six years, I think this is a good time to step down.  We have expanded academic programs in critical workforce shortage areas such as cybersecurity and homeland security.  And, thanks to the solid leadership and wise counsel provided by the Board of Visitors, Alumni Board, the shared governance councils, the Art Board, and the Cybersecurity Think Tank member, UMUC has flourished academically and its students have benefitted.

"I offer my sincere thanks to every member of the UMUC staff and faculty who have dedicated their time to educating and supporting UMUC's special students."

Following Aldridge's announcement, USM Chancellor William E. Kirwan announced that Javier Miyares, UMUC's senior vice president for institutional effectiveness, will continue as the university's acting president.  Miyares has been serving in this position since February 22, 2012, and has been a member of the UMUC management team for more than 10 years.

"During Susan's tenure, UMUC advanced measurably," said Kirwan. "The institution's innovation and responsiveness in addressing critical workforce demands make it an invaluable resource for USM, the state, and indeed the nation. On behalf of the University System of Maryland, I thank Susan for her service and wish her much success in the years ahead.  Given its outstanding management team, faculty, and staff members, UMUC is well positioned for leadership transition."   

Added Kirwan:   "I am confident that Javier has the leadership ability, commitment, and long-term record of exemplary service needed to move the university forward during this transition period.  I greatly appreciate his willingness to continue as acting president."

"I am honored to serve in this capacity, as we continue to take this best-of-class global university to even higher levels of excellence," said Miyares, who has more than 30 years of higher education experience.

Aldridge will continue on administrative leave through August 31, 2012, while also serving as a special adviser to UMUC working on special projects under the direction of the chancellor and the acting president.

"Dr. Aldridge's expertise in adult and online education and in adapting UMUC's academic programs to the needs of the workplace are well respected," said Patricia S. Florestano, chair of the USM Board of Regents. "I am pleased that UMUC and the system will be able to draw upon her expertise over the next months." 

During the past five years, UMUC's accomplishments have been many, including the successful completion of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education's 10-year reaccreditation and the awarding of 22,221 bachelor's degrees, 14,315 master's degrees, and 158 doctorates. Other significant achievements during this period include the following.

  • Growing statewide enrollment by an annual average of 7 percent.
  • Turning around declines in overseas enrollments.
  • Successfully bidding for the U.S. Department of Defense's contracts to provide higher education to American troops stationed in Central Asia (including Iraq and Afghanistan) and in the Far East (Japan, Korea, Okinawa, and Guam).
  • Bringing together a group of national experts who helped UMUC offer the first programs in cybersecurity in Maryland.
  • Completing nearly 80 community college alliance agreements, including one for every community college in Maryland.
  • Establishing a new graduate education department and reactivating the Master of Arts in teaching, providing certification in the secondary school subjects that include STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) fields.

"As chair of UMUC's Board of Visitors, I have the privilege of being affiliated with a remarkable university, which has become a leader in cyber security education," said Mark Gerencser, executive vice president of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc. "I want to express my appreciation to Dr. Aldridge for her tireless efforts on behalf of the university.  "She has built a solid base of executive leadership and a strong institutional foundation, which should enable UMUC to reach even greater heights of global education excellence in the years to come."

For more information about University of Maryland University College, visit:

Contact: Anne Moultrie at USM Office
Phone: 301.445.2722

Contact: Chip Cassano at UMUC
Phone: 301.985.7250