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A Bold New Collaboration to Leverage UMD and UMB Resources

Dear Members of the University of Maryland Community: 

We are writing to inform you that the University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents today approved an innovative and structured collaboration between the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP) and the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) called the University of Maryland: MPowering the State. 

We are confident that this new collaboration between the state's flagship and founding campuses will benefit both institutions, USM, and the state of Maryland. The new working relationship will leverage the resources of these two great universities to serve students better; attract even more exceptional faculty and researchers; and boost research, technology transfer and commercialization. This, in turn, will allow USM to better address Maryland's workforce needs and for UMCP and UMB to attract more research funding to the state. 

Among the partnership's components are: 

—Establishing University of Maryland Ventures to promote technology transfer and commercialization, taking discoveries and innovations from the campus laboratories to the marketplace. 

—Combining the research efforts at the Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research—a joint UMB-UMCP institute—at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG) in Montgomery County with new educational programs in health, law, human services and STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), business, and the social sciences. USG is one of the university system's two higher education regional centers. 

—Creating a Collaborative School of Public Health resulting from combining the Master of Public Health (MPH) Program at UMCP and the MPH Program in Baltimore. 

—Development of new educational offerings and activities including the University of Maryland Scholars Program, through which students from each institution will engage in research led by faculty at the other institution. 

—Implementation of a process to facilitate joint appointments and joint grant submissions. 

IMPLEMENTATION 

This new collaboration will be led initially by a steering committee, appointed by and reporting to the UMCP and UMB presidents, who in turn will be accountable to the USM chancellor and Board of Regents for the success of the collaborative activities. Implementation of the plan, which begins immediately, will require investment of funds from a variety of sources. 

BACKGROUND 

The Board of Regents on December 9, 2011, charged us with developing the plan for this new collaboration between UMB and UMCP. That board action resulted from a comprehensive six-month study of the advantages and disadvantages of merging the two universities in response to a Maryland Joint Chairmen's directive. Based on the study, the board concluded that a structured collaboration between UMB and UMCP would yield more success than a merger. 

This new alliance—University of Maryland: MPowering the State—provides a strong framework for UMCP and UMB to work together in powerful new ways that will advance institutions, USM, our state and nation during these globally competitive and fiscally challenging times. 

Sincerely, 

Wallace D. Loh, President, University of Maryland, College Park 

Jay A. Perman, University of Maryland, Baltimore 

William E. Kirwan, Chancellor, University System of Maryland