Category Archives: Uncategorized

Bill Thomas, Erickson School, in the Baltimore Sun

According to a recent ranking that examined climate, crime, life expectancy taxes and the cost of living, Maryland is the fifth-worst state in which to retire. However, some argue that there is more to retirement than the raw numbers suggest. Close proximity to friends, family, community, health care and amenities can also be important factors. “People in the beginning of retirement are concerned about taxes,” said Bill Thomas, professor of the practice, Erickson School of Aging Studies. “I can put you on a desert island with no taxes at all, and you will not be happy,” Thomas says. “Would you leave your family to save 10 percent on taxes?”

The article, “Study Rates Maryland One of the Worst Places to Retire,” appeared September 26 in the Baltimore Sun.

CSEE Achievements Day (5/7)

The Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering is celebrating the research achievements of CSEE faculty and students in 2009-10. This event is free with space limited to 125 and will be held Friday, May 7, at the Technology Center, South Campus.

A reception will kick off the day with coffee, orange juice and doughnuts at 9 a.m., followed by remarks and sessions throughout the day. For more information, click here.

Albin O. Kuhn Memorial Service (5/23)

From: President Freeman A. Hrabowski, III

The UMBC community will celebrate the life and achievements of our first Chancellor, Albin O. Kuhn on Sunday, May 23, at 2 p.m. Dr. Kuhn, who died on March 24 at the age of 94, and played a central role in UMBC’s development. We are the beneficiaries each day of his contributions.

Kuhn began his career in higher education at the University of Maryland, College Park, where he was a professor of agronomy and chair of the agronomy department. In 1965, as executive vice president of the University of Maryland System, he was asked to oversee the creation of UMBC. He led the initial planning, development and construction of the campus and served as chancellor until the University’s second commencement in 1971.

Needless to say, Kuhn’s leadership capacity was extraordinary. Even after leaving UMBC to become chancellor of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, he remained a strong supporter of UMBC. He often called me to express pride in our latest accomplishments.

The memorial service and reception to celebrate Dr. Kuhn’s life will be held in the Gallery of the Albin O. Kuhn Library. I hope that you will join Chancellor Kirwan, the Kuhn family, other members of our campus community and me for this special gathering.

RSVP by May 14 to Linda Durkos at ext. 5-2356 or

Directional signs for parking will be located along the campus road.

Visual Culture and Evolution Online Symposium (Through 4/14)

Join a group of more than 30 international experts – including artists, scientists, historians, ethicists, curators, sociologists and writers – as they discuss the intersections between the visual arts and evolution. This past year, in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his book, “On the Origin of Species,” a number of conferences were held around the world focusing on the impact of the concept of evolution. This symposium will be a platform to discuss both the ideas generated from those activities and the present impact of evolutionary thought on visual culture.

The Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences will co-host the “Visual Culture and Evolution Online Symposium” with the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture and Johns Hopkins University’s Master of Arts in Museum Studies Program. The online symposium will take place on the Internet from April 5-14.

The symposium, which will be conducted through software designed for online courses, will be publicly accessible at

Compensation and Benefits Information Session (4/20 & 4/23)

The Department of Human Resources (HR) will be sponsoring two Open Enrollment Information Sessions as part of on-going open enrollment awareness. The sessions will highlight major changes occurring during this year’s open enrollment, as well as standard information regarding the State benefit plans.

Discussion items include:

  • Details regarding new spending account vendor, Connect Your Care
  • Use of the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system
  • Key Legislation Implemented for New Plan Year

We encourage you to attend at least one of these information sessions. More details regarding this year’s open enrollment may be found on the Human Resources Web site (click the Open Enrollment link).  Remember, the deadline date for this year’s open enrollment period is April 28. Information sessions will be April 20 and 23, at The Commons, Room 331.

Passing of Passing of Albin Owings Kuhn, UMBC’s First Chancellor

From:​ Freeman Hrabowski

It is with deep sadness that I inform you of the passing of Albin Owings Kuhn.

Albin O. Kuhn served as UMBC’s first Chancellor, when the University opened its doors in 1966, and was heavily involved in the campus’s
initial planning, development and construction.

A graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park (B.S., M.S., Ph.D.), he served there early in his career as Professor of Agronomy
(1941-1955) and  Chair of the Agronomy Department (1948-1955).  He also served as Assistant to the President (1955-1958) and Executive
Vice President (1958-1965) of the University of Maryland System, which at that time included the College Park, Baltimore City, and Eastern
Shore campuses.

In 1965, Dr. Kuhn was given responsibility for developing our campus, then the newest member of the System. He and his family moved into one
of the original farmhouses on the campus grounds – a small gray house that became his family’s residence, his office, and a welcoming place
frequented by UMBC students and faculty members.  Its porch became the catalog center for the library’s nascent 20,000-volume collection.
That farmhouse is gone today, replaced by our library, which was named to honor Dr. Kuhn.

He served officially as Chancellor of both UMBC and the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) professional schools campus, a position he
held from 1967 until UMBC’s second Commencement in 1971. At that time, the leadership of the two campuses was separated, and he left UMBC to
serve as Chancellor of UMB. Needless to say, Albin Kuhn’s leadership capacity was extraordinary.  The 25th-anniversary commemorative issue
of UMBC Review noted, “It is remarkable to think that Kuhn built UMBC, but worked only one half day every day to do it.”

At Commencement each year, I share with graduates the following advice Albin Kuhn offered UMBC’s first graduating class in 1970:

“If you bring to the future the same personal qualities and personal commitment you have brought to this campus as students, good and
important things will happen to each of you, as well as to those around you…and the university community will be proud to have played a
part in your life.”

Albin Kuhn is remembered by his colleagues and friends for his lifetime commitment to UMBC’s growth and success, to the success of
public higher education in Maryland, and for his outstanding service as an administrator, professor, mentor, and friend. We will miss him

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to the Friends of the Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery at UMBC. Checks may be made
payable to the UMBC Foundation and sent to the Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery, Administrative Offices, UMBC, 1000 Hilltop Circle,
Baltimore, MD  21250.

Viewings will be held Friday, March 26, from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m., at the Haight Funeral Home and Chapel at 6416 Sykesville Road (Route 32),
Sykesville, MD 21784.

Plans for a memorial service on campus are being made, and we will keep the campus community informed.

Planning for Performance Management Success: A Guide for Supervisors (4/9)

This workshop is required training for all supervisors of regular and contingent II staff. In this overview of the Performance Management Process (PMP), you will learn about the benefits of performance management, the importance of ongoing communication, the PMP cycle, how to use the PMP form and strategies for professional development. Elmer Falconer, director of employment/labor relations, is the instructor for this workshop.

The workshop will be Friday, April 9, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., in The Commons, Room 331.

Register by April 1, here.

Get a flyer with details here.

UMBC Tops in Computer and Information Science Degrees

UMBC was included in a recent list released in the CyberMaryland Report by Governor O’Malley. Gus Sentementes of the Baltimore Sun’s technology blog, “BaltTech,” wrote a post about the rankings and republished it with some slight modifications. He said, “As you can see, UMBC in Catonsville stands well above the rest, and churns out many, many undergraduates in the fields.”

The post, “UMBC tops in computer and information science degrees,” ran Wednesday, January 20.

Kudos in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics

Grants Awarded:

  • Bimal Sinh, professor of mathematics and statistics, has been awarded a contract from the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, a national leader in science education and research.
  • Thomas Mathew, professor of mathematics and statistics, has been awarded a contract from Merck & Co., Inc.
  • Jinglai Shen, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics, has been awarded a new grant from the National Science Foundation.
  • John Zweck, associate professor of mathematics and statistics, is the co-principal investigator on a new Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab grant.

Other News:

  • Yvonne Huang, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics, initiated a new joint biostatistics course with University of Maryland School of Medicine, Cancer Center.
  • Aninda Roy, associate professor of mathematics and statistics, was named associate editor of the Journal of the American Statistical Association.
  • Susan Minkoff, associate professor of mathematics and statistics, has been named the chair of the membership committee for the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics.
  • Mathematics Majors Michael Powers ‘12, Kathryn Cronise ‘13, Erika Koenig ‘13, Elizabeth Levitt ‘13 and Allen Welch ‘12 have been nominated by the Office of Institutional Advancement Corporate Relations Office for the prestigious T. Rowe Price Scholarship. Students from universities around the country apply for this scholarship.

Thomas Schaller, Political Science, In the News

Republican-elected officials and consultants are clucking around the clock—no longer ducking reporters—as the new decade gets under way, anticipating major gains in Congress after the midterm elections this November. Thomas Schaller, associate professor of political science, recently made the case for Newt Gingrich as the candidate Democrats would least like to face in 2012. He wrote: “Gingrich may be the one candidate who can appeal equally to both mainstream and Washington Republicans, as well as the outsider, conservative wing of the party. He has a track record for knowing how to beat Democrats. And whatever one thinks about some of his futuristic ideas, he’s at least a guy with a vision and some fresh thoughts about policy.”

The article, “John Thune is the GOP’s Future,” ran in Splice Today, on Monday, January 11.

In his column for, Schaller wrote that a little more than a month ago, Harry Reid turned 70. Could his gaffe be the result of a generational difference? “The truth about Reid’s remarks — or, for that matter, Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele’s recent on-air “honest Injun” gaffe — is that these episodes today make news precisely because our inner geezers emerge publicly only in rare instances,” he wrote.

The article, “The geezer defense,” ran Wednesday, January 13.

In the wake of the back-to-back-to-back announced retirements of Sens. Byron Dorgan and Chris Dodd, and Gov. Bill Ritter of Colorado, all Democrats, asked some of the country’s top electoral analysts to talk about what the political environment looks like 10 months out from the 2010 midterms. Schaller was the moderator. “There are certain things that you all mention that are largely beyond the control of any party, like what the employment rate’s going to be in 10 months. Policies do matter to a certain degree, but there are some things the parties can control, and Democrats are touting big numbers in fundraising…”

The article, “How Will the Democrats Fare in the 2010 Election?” ran Tuesday, January 12.