The President's Message

President's Message, Bruce Jarrell

Each month, The President’s Message updates the UMB community on University initiatives; spotlights faculty, staff, and student achievements; and promotes upcoming UMB events.

UMB Continues to Thrive

March 2021

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) has faced this most extraordinary past year with incredible resilience. Almost one year ago, March 12, UMB asked those who could telework to do so, moved from in-person didactic classes to online, drastically limited research, and made adjustments to field and clinical placements. While we still face many challenges because of the COVID-19 pandemic, UMB as an institution is thriving.

For the first time, enrollment at UMB has surpassed 7,000 students for a spring term, increasing 5.5 percent from spring 2020. We have seen increases in enrollment at the School of Nursing in undergraduate and professional practice nursing; in the School of Pharmacy’s professional master’s programs, especially its MS in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics; in the Graduate School’s research doctorate programs; and in the Francis King Carey School of Law’s Day Law program.

We’ve also seen exciting rankings, collaborations, and new programs. The University of Maryland — UMB and the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP) combined — achieved its highest ranking ever in the National Science Foundation’s Higher Education Research and Development survey for Fiscal Year 2019, placing 14th overall nationally and eighth among public institutions in research and development spending. For the first time, UMB and UMCP were linked together as one research enterprise in the survey, with combined research expenditures of $1.1 billion.

In U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Best Online Programs rankings, the School of Nursing ranked among the Best Online Master’s in Nursing Programs for Veterans nationwide at No. 18. The school’s Master of Science in Nursing Health Services Leadership and Management specialty ranked No. 7 in the nation in the Nursing Administration Programs category, and its postbaccalaureate Teaching in Nursing and Health Professions Certificate ranked No. 8 in the nation in the Nursing Education Programs category. The school also has completed formal partnerships with every community college in Maryland that offers an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program when it launched agreements of dual admission with Hagerstown Community College and Allegany College of Maryland. These agreements enable a smooth transition from ADN programs to UMSON’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

The School of Pharmacy’s MS in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics, the first graduate program in the country dedicated to the study of medical cannabis, continues to grow. The two-year program, which began in 2019, blends online learning with face-to-face experiences and is designed for any individual who has completed their undergraduate degree and is interested in pursuing a career in the medical cannabis industry. Applications have far outpaced the number of available spaces in each of the first three years of this innovative program.

The Graduate School is partnering with the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations at Coventry University in the United Kingdom to offer a master’s degree and certificate in Vulnerability and Violence Reduction that will launch in fall 2021. The innovative program

includes UMB faculty from the Carey School of Law, School of Nursing, and Graduate School, many of whom are nationally recognized experts in public health, community engagement, conflict resolution, and global health. The international faculty will bring the best ideas from around the globe to address the problem of violence in multiple communities and, more importantly, the vulnerability that leads to violence. The degree builds on UMB’s commitment to community-engaged and asset-based approaches to address the overlapping epidemics of poverty, racism, and violence.

The Carey School of Law’s Day Law program consistently ranks in the top quartile of all law schools and was in the top 25 among public institutions for 2020. U.S. News & World Report ranked the school’s Part-Time Law program fifth in the country, Clinical Training sixth, Health Care seventh, Environmental 10th, and Dispute Resolution 13th.

The School of Dentistry launched a novel Clinical Dental Hygiene Leader (CDHL) program that, in two years, will award students a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. The dual-degree program was designed for college graduates who have a background in the sciences but want to delve specifically into the health care realm. The CDHL curriculum features a mix of online and clinical instruction and includes graduate-level courses focused on research, interpreting scientific data, scholarly writing, and ethical decision-making. It is oriented toward health care professionals who want to work more hands-on with patients, perhaps, or become a thought leader or project manager.

These are just some of the many exciting programs at UMB and accolades our schools have received. I’m also quite pleased that UMB was ranked No. 13 overall and No. 3 among universities in Forbes magazine’s America’s Best Large Employers 2021 survey. This is a testament to the dedicated employees at UMB who bring commitment and passion to what they do.

With COVID-19 affecting our lives so intensely, it is gratifying to see that our University continues to innovate, adjust, and thrive. Despite so much adversity, the folks who work, learn, and support UMB continue to bring their best efforts and rise to the challenges we face. I’m honored to lead an institution that is committed to fighting the pandemic by changing our activities, researching solutions, and adhering to the highest standards for health and safety for ourselves and others. I look forward to moving past this pandemic and continuing to see UMB thrive for years to come.


Bruce E. Jarrell, MD, FACS