A newsletter for Foundation directors and friends of higher education in Maryland

Letter from the President
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
What a month it has been! From traveling around the state with Chancellor Caret, to celebrating the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science's 90th anniversary, to catching up with board members old and new at our most recent meeting, it has been a highly productive and successful month. We kicked off Chancellor Caret's statewide listening tour in Southern Maryland (more below) and it has been encouraging and inspiring to hear how the USM supports our state as well as learning what we could be doing better. It also was a wonderful opportunity to spend more time with friends, colleagues, and Chancellor Caret outside of the office, giving us a chance to strengthen our relationships and collaborative efforts.
At our October 20th USM Foundation board meeting, we heard from Javier Miyares and Darren Catalano from the University of Maryland University College (UMUC). Darren and his colleague Peter C. Young played a significant role in developing the analytics UMUC used in maximizing enrollment, improving retention and graduation rates, and better assessing student, faculty, and staff needs. Their work has become the founding basis for the newly formed HelioCampus, which is available to other higher education institutions. It was a fascinating topic and one that I know was of interest to many of our board members.
These last few months of the year promise to be just as engaging. With Chancellor Caret's inauguration just a few weeks away, it will be an exciting and special occasion to officially welcome him back to Maryland and celebrate with peers from institutions all over the country. 

As always, please contact me at raley@usmd.edu or 301-445-1941 with any questions or comments.
Leonard R. Raley
August 2015 Investment Office Update
August was volatile as the sell-off in Chinese domestic stocks and the unexpected depreciation of the renminbi intensified concerns about the health of China's economy. Based upon economic news from Europe and the U.S., worries about a potential growth slowdown outside of China also flared up during the month. The VIX, a measure of market risk that is often referred to as a "fear gauge," spiked to a four year high, while crude oil prices reached a six year low. Many asset classes sold off during the month, with emerging markets securities and commodities being particularly impacted.
Earlier this month, Chancellor Robert L. Caret embarked on a four- day statewide listening tour, which gave him the opportunity to meet with regional leaders and community members from various industries. The tour allowed Chancellor Caret to hear firsthand how the USM successfully serves the distinct geographic regions of Maryland and where it can improve its efforts. A key goal of the tour was to identify and cultivate partnerships to better serve USM students, the Maryland business community, and the state as a whole. Beginning in Southern Maryland, the tour made its way around Maryland to the greater Baltimore region, the Eastern Shore, Prince George's County, and western Maryland before ending in Montgomery County. The chancellor and his colleagues on the bus logged about 900 miles on the tour.

Visit the USM's Facebook page to see photos and videos from the tour.

The USM and its partners discovered that one of the largest barriers to college completion for underrepresented minority students is developmental mathematics. In an effort to help more students graduate, especially those in liberal arts and social science disciplines, the USM will implement a new Maryland Mathematics Reform Initiative at five USM institutions and several community colleges over a four-year period. Coursework for students in those majors will change from algebra and calculus to statistics, offering a greater "real world" application that will be much more relevant to their professional needs. The rollout is made possible by a recent $2.98 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

In a recent Board of Trustees meeting at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP), university officials announced that the Mathematics Building has been renamed William E. Kirwan Hall in honor of chancellor emeritus Brit Kirwan. Brit joined the Department of Mathematics at UMCP in 1964 and served as a tenured department faculty member for 46 years, rising through the ranks to become department chair, provost, president, and finally, USM chancellor. Since retiring in June, Brit has spoken of his plans to move back to the math department, which resides in the building now named for him.
October 2015
Vol. 9, Iss. 10
In This Issue
USM News Briefs   

UMCES has led the way toward better management of Maryland's natural resources and the protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. To celebrate its 90th anniversary, UMCES has offered public tours of three of its laboratories and hosted several 5k runs and an anniversary celebration for 200 Maryland policymakers, supporters, and friends.

Frostburg State University experienced its highest enrollment numbers in its 117-year history, thanks to new online course offerings. With 5,756 total students, the university saw a two percent increase from Fall 2014 enrollment numbers. International students helped increase Frostburg's Fall 2015 enrollment numbers with a record high of 116 international students attending the university.

Trends in Philanthropy

At York University, they don't just hire student callers. They hire future fundraisers. The program has allowed the York University's annual giving department to create career-ready development professionals, raise more money for the annual fund, and free up gift officers to pursue larger gifts. Learn more about how York University used a natural resource - its students! - to expand their annual giving program.

Board Member News 

USM Regent and USM Foundation Board Director Linda R. Gooden has been named to the Board of Directors of The Home Depot. She will serve on the company's Audit and Leadership Development and Compensation Committees and brings her expertise in IT, strategic planning, risk management and general business to the board.

Congratulations, Linda!

Jess Gill

Editor, LeaderNotes