Friday, April 13,
Board of Regents
Chancellor William E.
Thank you Mr. Chairman and members of the Board of
Regents. Let me add my welcome to our
With the Faculty Awards, a full agenda, and significant
budgetary /legislative information to cover, I will try to keep my comments
I begin by thanking our host this morning: the University of
Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) and President Don
Boesch. As you may know, Don and David
Nemazie-Assistant to the President-recently served as members of Governor
O'Malley's Environment and Natural Resources Transition Work Group. In addition, Don served as co-chair of the
Coordinating Subcommittee, which had the formidable task of merging nine
separate reports into a single comprehensive transition document. Their work was key in establishing the
Governor's BayStat initiative to better monitor and coordinate efforts to
improve the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Their efforts reflect exceptionally well upon
Don, UMCES - the state's primary resource for studying and protecting the Chesapeake
Bay and its watershed, and upon the entire University System of
In other news across the USM . . . .
Seven members of the USM "family" were listed among the Daily Record's "50 Influential
Marylanders for 2007":
of Maryland, Baltimore
County (UMBC) President Freeman Hrabowski
of Maryland, College
Park (UMCP) President Dan Mote
University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute
(UMBI) President Jennie Hunter-Cevera
Dean of the University
of Maryland School
of Medicine Albert Reece
Dean of the University
of Maryland School
of Law Karen Rothenberg
Director of the Maryland
Industrial Partnerships Program at UMCP, Martha Connolly
And UMCP Athletic Director, Debbie Yow
Also in the Daily Record,
three USM leaders were named among "Maryland's
Top 100 Women" for 2007:
Dr. Carolyn B. Brooks, Dean of the School of
Agricultural and Natural Sciences, University of Maryland
Eastern Shore (UMES)
Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach, President of Salisbury
Dr. Jennie Hunter-Cevera, President of the
University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute (UMBI)
Once again, USM institutions did very well in the 2008 edition
of U.S. News's rankings of America's
Best Graduate Schools.
U.S. News ranked
UMCP's graduate business, education, and engineering programs in the top tiers
of their fields.
The Robert H. Smith School of Business climbed
to 25th among national business schools.
of Education rose to 21st among
graduate education programs.
And UMCP's Clark School of Engineering ranked 16th
and its aerospace engineering program ranked 11th.
At the University of
of Nursing climbed from 10th to
seventh place among all nursing schools in the nation.
of Medicine rose to 16th in
research and 20th in primary care instruction among the nation's public medical
And the School
of Law advanced from 42nd to 36th
among the nation's law schools, placing 15th among all public law schools
UMB also excelled in the most recent Association of American
Medical Colleges (AAMC) research rankings. In terms of total direct research
expenditures, among all 126 public and private medical schools, the UM School
of Medicine now ranks 18th overall and 8th among public medical school. They ranked 3rd among public medical schools
in research grants and contracts expenditures per clinical faculty.
With this success at the medical school, an outstanding new
dean, the creation of the new Institute of Genome
Sciences under the direction of a recent recruit and one of America's leading genomic
scientists - Claire M. Fraser-Liggett, and
the move of the Institute of Human Virology into the School of Medicine, UMB's
School of Medicine is poised for even greater accomplishments and recognition
in the future. Very fittingly, all these
developments occur as the School also celebrates its bicentennial this
UMBC has also received significant attention recently. There was a wonderful feature of President
Freeman Hrabowski in the Chronicle of
Higher Education earlier this week.
Last month the New York Times profiled
UMBC Distinguished Professor Michael F. Summers, Freeman, and the Meyerhoff
Program as an example of an institution combining both outstanding science and
We have just released our "Listening Tour Report." You will recall that the three sectors of
higher education - two year colleges, four year publics, and the independent
institutions came together in an impressive display of collaboration. We traveled together to 7 locations around
the state to listen to business and community leaders as they told us about
their higher education needs. The report,
which has been sent to all of you, presents the findings of the listening tour
as well as recommendations and action items developed from the discussions at
the seven stops.
In addition to broader themes, the steering committee, of
which I am a member, developed three recommendations to be implemented as a
result of the listening tour:
Create a Clearinghouse for Internship
Opportunities to engage both small and large businesses in developing
internship opportunities for Maryland's
higher education students.
Create New and Expand Existing Degree Programs
That Address Workforce Shortages Areas discovered during the tour, as well as
those outlined in the soon to be released report of the Governor's Workforce
Develop Communication And Outreach Strategies aimed
at encouraging greater proportions of middle school students to prepare for
The steering committee will be responsible for implementing
these recommendations. I again want to
thank the presidents for their support of this effort and, most especially,
Anne Moultrie for her leadership in organizing the tour and for the preparation
of the final report.
An issue that has gained a lot of national attention these
past few weeks is the inappropriate relationship between financial aid
officials on some college campuses and the "preferred" lenders that these
officials recommend to their students.
Several embarrassing situations have been uncovered at universities
across the nation. As you know, I asked
our presidents to look into this matter immediately and to report back to me on
practices at their respective campuses.
While we are still assessing their reports, I am pleased to say that
none of the situations that have gained so much notoriety at other campuses
have been identified within the USM. I
will make a full report to you on my findings within the next weeks or so.
I'll end my report with a summary of the recently concluded
legislative session. In short, it was a
very successful session for the USM and we are indebted to Governor O'Malley
and the General Assembly for their strong support of higher education and, in
particular, the USM.
In the final budget decisions, our operating budget was cut by
$2 million off of a $70 million request.
Most state entities received much deeper cuts. Given what happened to other state agencies, and
given that the legislature's budget staff recommended a cut of $15
million, a total reduction of only $2 million has to be viewed as satisfactory outcome.
Despite this generally favorable outcome, there is a
disturbing policy aspect about the cut.
The budget language stipulates that the cut should come from enrollment
growth funds and, further, that the USM should not lower its enrollment
projections. This flies in the face of
the enrollment growth principle we thought had been established with the state;
namely, that the state would provide its share of the cost on a per student
basis as we serve more students. We
intend to seek greater clarity on this matter from the General Assembly
leadership. After further consultation
with the legislative leadership and the presidents, I will be coming back to
the Board to recommend a strategy for addressing this $2 million cut.
I want to emphasize again, however, how well we have been
supported by the Governor and the General Assembly. With the addition of a 2% COLA to our budget,
we will receive a General Fund increase of about 9% for FY 08, a level of
funding that few university in the nation will be able to match. Clearly, higher education in general-and
the USM in particular-continues to gain prominence in the mind of leaders in Annapolis
as a "funding priority".
The capital budget is also an area where the USM saw some significant
successes, coupled with a few disappointments.
On the plus side, our total allocation is $172M, one of the largest
allocations to the USM in history. Also,
the Tawes project at College Park
was added into the budget. Although this
was accomplished by reducing FY08 funding for the Coppin State Physical Education
Building, the reduction will actually not cause any construction delays, as
funding for the Coppin project will be added back in FY09 and in time to keep
the project on track.
A major disappointment with the Capital Budget is that planning
funds for the Pharmacy Building
at UMB, which were not included in the Governor's Budget, were not added by the
General Assembly as we had hoped. There is, however, language essentially
guaranteeing these funds in FY09.
There were two pieces of legislation that were especially
important to the USM. The first was the
much discussed program duplication bill.
Significantly different versions of this bill passed in the Senate and
the House. The differences were so great
in fact that no agreement could be reached on a final version and so no final
bill was enacted.
Also in the "did not pass" category was the collective
bargaining "agency fees" bill, which would have allowed for the
possibility of dues payment from staff whether or not they were members of a
union, and a bill providing for in-state tuition for undocumented
veterans agree that this was one of the most difficult sessions ever because of
the tightness of funds, the resolve of the General Assembly to cut the Governor's
budget, and several pieces of highly contentious legislation. However, my feeling
is that we came through the session very, very well. The reason for our success can be found
throughout the USM, with our Regents, Presidents,
System and campus officers, faculty and staff, and, of course, our students, engaging
elected officials and making the case for support of our institutions so
I want to make special note of the work Roz Hamlett and the
campus government relations officers. In
a very challenging environment, they came together to work collectively, collaboratively
and very effectively on behalf of the system.
We simply could not have been as successful without their hard work.
Mr. Chairman . . . . this completes my report.