MAC to Millennium


Academic Departments — (1998)-83; (2001)-88; (2019)-65.

Academy Award Winners — Jim Henson (Class of 1960) was nominated for an Academy Award in 1965 in the Best Short Subject, Live Action Subjects category for his short film Time Piece. Dianne Wiest (Class of 1969) won the 1995 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the movie Bullets Over Broadway; she also won the same award in 1986 for Hannah and Her Sisters. Mark Lasoff (Class of 1988) won an Oscar in 1998 for Best Visual Effects for the movie Titanic. Walt Disney adapted the popular children's book The Story of Ferdinand, written by alumnus Munro Leaf (Class of 1927), into the seven-minute animated film Ferdinand the Bull, which won an Academy Award in the Best Short Subject (Cartoon) category in 1938.  The university's Visual Press received an Academy Award for Best Short Subject and Documentary in 2000 for their documentary "King Gimp," which also received a Peabody Award the same year.

ACC — The University of Maryland was one of eight charter members of Atlantic Coast Conference, an intercollegiate athletics organization founded in 1953. While in the conference, the Terrapins competed against the University of Virginia, North Carolina State University, Georgia Tech (Georgia Institute of Technology), Clemson University, Florida State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Wake Forest University, and Duke University; Virginia Tech (Virginia Polytechnic and State University) and the University of Miami became members in 2004, and Boston College joined in 2005. The conference expanded again, adding the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University in September 2011, and Notre Dame in September 2012. On July 1, 2014, Maryland departed the ACC and joined the Big Ten Conference.

Acres on Campus — (2019) 5,210, including off-campus locations that the University maintains; 1,340 acres comprise the main campus, not including the woods and the golf course.

Acres on Original Campus — 428; purchased from Charles Benedict Calvert, prominent planter and landowner in Prince George's County, his brother George, and their wives, at a cost of $50 per acre.

African American History Tour — Self-guided walking tour of campus, commissioned by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and coordinated through the Office of Multicultural Involvement and Community Advocacy, that highlights campus landmarks associated with the impact of African Americans at the University of Maryland and throughout history.


Hiram Whittle, first African American undergrad

African American Students — The first African American undergraduate student was Hiram Whittle, who entered the University of Maryland in 1951. The first African American graduate student to complete his coursework on campus was Parren James Mitchell, who received his M.A. in sociology in 1952; the university named the Art-Sociology Building for him in 2015. The first African American female undergraduate at the university was Elaine Johnson, who began her studies in 1955 and received her degree in education in 1959.

Other early African American graduate students at the university include Rose Shockley Wiseman, Myrtle Holmes Wake, and John Francis Davis, who completed their coursework off-campus but received their master's degrees in education at the June 9, 1951, commencement ceremony in College Park, and Selma Romaine Mason Toye, who received a M.Ed. degree on August 2, 1957.

Additional early African American undergraduates included Cephas Donald Hughes, Franklin William Hunt, and Wallis Worthington Johnson, who received their degrees in 1960.

In 1959, Joseph Alexander Wiseman, husband of alumna Rose Wiseman, was the first African American awarded a doctoral degree by the University of Maryland. Dr. Wiseman's dissertation was entitled "An evaluation of the special school systems during a three-year period beginning in 1955-56 through 1957-58." Seven years later, in 1966, Rebecca Carroll became the first African American woman to earn a doctorate from the University of Maryland. She received her degree in Education, and her dissertation was entitled "A Comparative Study of the Self-Perceptions of Fifth-Grade Boys and Girls as Learners." Jerusa C. Wilson was another early African American Ph.D. recipient; he received his degree in Experimental and Quantitative Psychology in 1962 for his dissertation entitled "An Investigation of Vigilance in the Rhesus Monkey."

Agricultural Experiment Station — Established in 1888. The first off-campus substation, Ridgely, was established in 1918.

Agriculture and Natural Resources, College of — Created in 1995 from parts of other administrative entities; new name reflects the growing importance of conservation and management of water, soil, air, plant and animal resources. Instruction in agriculture dates to founding of the Maryland Agricultural College in 1856.  For more information, visit the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources website.


Connie Chung as 1966 Freshman Queen

Agriculture Day — This celebration was first held in 1924, when the campus Livestock Club held its first fitting and showing contest as part of "Farmer's Day," which was sponsored by the university.  Agriculture Day activities are now part of the university's annual Maryland Day open house, held on the last Saturday in April.

Alma Mater — Words and music by Robert Kinney, Class of 1940; copyright 1941 by the University of Maryland Student Government Association.

Allegany Hall — Dormitory constructed in 1954; named for Allegany County, Maryland.

Alumni Day — Celebration associated with June graduation exercises. Among the activities on Alumni Day were planting ivy by the senior class (begun in 1926), a tug-of-war between the Sophomore and Freshman classes, the passing on of school traditions, and class reunions.

Alumni, Famous — A number of Maryland alumni have gone on to achieve fame, including Jim Henson (creator of the Muppets); Carl Bernstein (reporter for the Washington Post who helped break the Watergate story); Connie Chung (television news anchor); Larry David (co-creator and executive producer of Seinfeld); Len Elmore (sportscaster); Roland Martin (fishing expert and broadcaster); Odonna Matthews (vice president for consumer affairs at Giant Food); Mark McEwen (weather and entertainment editor for CBS This Morning); Parren Mitchell (congressman); Galo Plaza (president of Ecuador); Pernell Roberts (actor); Ken Waissman (Broadway producer); Dianne Wiest (actress); Vashti McKenzie (first women to be elected bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church); and Jason Kravitz (actor on the television series The Practice). (See also Alumni Hall of Fame, Alumni of Note and Quarterback Factory, among other topics.)

Alumni Hall of Fame — Created to celebrate individuals whose personal and professional achievements have brought honor and distinction to the University of Maryland. Alumni are honored with a display in the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center. A new group of inductees is selected every five years.  Visit the Alumni Association Hall of Fame page to read their brief biographies.

Amazing Race — UMD alumna Kym Perfetto, Class of 2002, competed in the CBS Television reality show "Amazing Race" in 2014 and finished in fifth place with her teammate Alli Forsythe.  Perfetto, known as KymNonStop, has also appeared in the movies Premium Rush (2012) and Shot in the Heart (2001) and on the television show "Homicide: Life on the Street" (1998).

Ambassadors, U.S. — Maryland alumni Joseph B. Gildenhorn, John Berry, Robin Raphel, Prudence Bushnell, Peter Bodde, Robert W. Jordan, Roscoe Suddarth, and David Satterfield have represented the United States as ambassadors, Gildenhorn to Switzerland from 1989 to 1993; Berry to Australia from 2013-2016; Raphel to Tunisia from 1997 to 2000; Bushnell to Kenya (1996-1999) and Guatemala (1999-2002); Bodde to Malawi (2008-2010), Nepal (2012-2015), and Libya (2015-2018); Jordan to Saudi Arabia (2001-2003); Suddarth to Jordan (1987-1990); and Satterfield to Lebanon (1998-2001) and Turkey (beginning on June 28, 2019).  Faculty member Ivo Daalder, an associate professor in the School of Public Policy, served as the U.S. Permanent Representative on the Council of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) from May 2009 to July 2013.  Alumna Diana Lady Dougan was awarded the permanent title of ambassador for her role in International Communications and Information Policy negotiations in the 1980s; she oversaw international telecom, broadcast, and IT policy interests including coordinating treaty negotiations involving over a dozen U.S. federal agencies.  Alumnus Esteban Edward Torres served as United States Ambassador to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Paris, France, from 1977 to 1979.

Ambassadors, International — Jesus Tambunting, Class of 1960, served as the Philippine Ambassador to the United Kingdom from 1993 to 1998.  Kwesi Ahwoi, who undertook graduate studies at UMD from 1985 to 1986, became the first Ambassador for Ghana to the Comoros and has also served as the Ghanaian ambassador to Lesotho, Mauritius, Seychelles, and Swaziland.

America’s Big Deal—Alumna Sherrill Mosee, Class of 1986,founder of all-in-one handbag company MinkeeBlue, won the premiere episode of America’s Big Deal, the USA Network’s live, “shoppable” pitch competition. Four entrepreneurs have two and a half minutes to pitch their products, which viewers can then purchase in real time. At the end of the hour, the contestant who earned the most money in sales wins a deal with one of the show’s panelists, who represent companies including Macy’s, Lowe’s and QVC/HSN. Mosee’s Mariah Backpack, a hybrid work bag-travel bag-purse, came out on top in the show’s debut, selling out inventory and landing her a $100,000 purchase order with Macy’s.

America’s Got Talent—Several Terps have been featured on the popular TV competition series America’s Got Talent. UMD’s Gymkana troupe reached the semi-finals in 2011, and mentalist Max Major, Class of 2005, reached the semi-finals in 2020.

American Academy of Arts and Sciences — As of 2022, 30 UMD faculty, administrators, and alumni have been elected members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  The Academy, founded in 1780, "honors excellence and convenes leaders from every field of human endeavor to examine new ideas, address issues of importance to the nation and the world, and work together 'to cultivate every art and science which may tend to advance the interest, honor, dignity, and happiness of a free, independent, and virtuous people.'"

American Association of Universities — The University of Maryland was elected to membership in this prestigious organization in 1969.

Annapolis Hall — Originally constructed in 1924; designed by Flournoy and Flournoy; razed and rebuilt in 1988; named for the state capital, Annapolis, Maryland.

Anne Arundel Hall — Dormitory constructed in 1937; named for Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

Apiary — Constructed in 1951 adjacent to the McNamee Cemetery near Maryland Stadium, the apiary was originally home to the University of Maryland bee colony, which produces several varieties of honey sold on campus. The building is now the outreach center for the University of Maryland Arboretum and Botanical Garden.

Apple Patent — Christopher Walsh, professor in the Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture, received the university's first patent for a new variety of apple, called Antietam Blush, in 2018.  This apple was specially bred through the Maryland Apple Tree Architecture Project to be well-adapted to the Mid-Atlantic climate, resistant to disease, more cost-effective grow, and more heat tolerant.

Apollo 11  UMD has a long-lasting connection to the Apollo 11 mission and its famous moon landing.  A small panel of 100 mirrors, called the lunar laser ranging array, placed on the Moon during Armstrong and Aldrin's work on the surface combines with two other panels placed by Apollo 14 and 15 astronauts to reflect lasers beamed by telescopes on Earth.  In part, these arrays help verify portions of Einstein's theory of relativity.  The original array was developed by UMD faculty members Doug Currie and Carroll Alley as part of a national team of scientists.

Arboretum and Botanic Garden — The American Association of Public Gardens designated the UMD campus as an official arboretum and botanic garden in 2008, recognizing the university's commitment to becoming a green campus.  An arboretum is defined as "a place where trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants are cultivated for scientific and educational purposes."  More information may be found on the Arboretum's website.

Architecture Building — Constructed in 1972. Special features of the building include a plaque dedicated to Henry Powell Hopkins in honor of his support of the School of Architecture and a sculpture behind the building given in memory of Herbert E. Rycroft II, sculpted by Raymond Kaskey in 1972.


Old Annapolis Hall

Architecture, Planning, and Preservation; School of — Founded in 1967 as the School of Architecture; now includes programs in historic preservation and urban studies and planning. For more information, visit the School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation website.

Art Gallery — Founded in 1965, located in the Parren J. Mithcell Art-Sociology Building since 1976. The gallery supports the development of contemporary art and visual culture in the region, as well as academic scholarship and research on campus. Three other art galleries on campus are the Herman Maril Gallery (Art-Sociology Building), the David C. Driskell Center (Cole Activities Building), and the Stamp Gallery (Stamp Student Union). For more information, visit the University of Maryland Art Gallery website.

Artemesia Building — Constructed in 1971 and acquired by the university in 2016.  Located at 8400 Baltimore Avenue in the City of College Park.  Named for Lake Artemesia.  Houses offices fo units in the School of Public Health and the offices of the Provost, Vice President for Administration and Finance, Vice President for Research, and Vice President for Student Affairs.

Artificial Intelligence — UMD professor of computer science Jack Minker made key contributions to the field of artificial intelligence and is a pioneer in the field of deductive databases and disjunctive logic programming.

Arts and Humanities; College of — The college traces its history to the founding of the College of Arts and Sciences in 1921. At present, the college includes a broad array of subject departments and specialized centers forming the core of the university's programs in arts and humanities disciplines. The university established the college under its current configuration in 1986, forming the college from other administrative entities. For more information, visit the College of Arts and Humanities website.

Astronauts — Judith Resnik, one of the astronauts who perished in the Challenger explosion, received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maryland in 1977; Paul Richards, a 1991 graduate with a master's degree in mechanical engineering, spent March 8-21, 2001, in space on the STS-102 Discovery mission to the International Space Station. He presented University of Maryland President C. D. Mote, Jr., with a banner he took on his first mission into space at a ceremony during Maryland Day 2001. William (Willie) McCool, who died aboard the space shuttle Columbia, received his master's degree in computer science from the university in 1985. Richard "Ricky" Arnold II (M.S., Marine Biology, 1992) was selected as a member of the 2004 class of astronaut recruits; his first journey into space was aboard the space shuttle Discovery, on a February 2009 mission to the International Space Station. Jeanette Epps (M.S. Aerospace Engineering, 1994; Ph.D. 2000) was selected as a member of the 2009 astronaut candidate class and completed her candidate training in 2012. She will make history in 2021 when she becomes the first African American female astronaut to serve as a member of the crew aboard the International Space Station.

Athletes, African American — The University of Maryland led the way in integrating intercollegiate competition in several sports in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). Maryland fielded the first African American team members in swimming (James Williams, 1964-1966); track (Elmore Hunter, 1965); football (Darryl Hill, 1962); and men's basketball (Billy Jones, 1964).  Ivan Taylor (Class of 1971) was the first African American student-manager in ACC men's basketball history.  Raymond Holland was the first African American to try out for the football team, attempting to make Coach Tommy Mont's squad in 1956.  The first African American female athlete to receive a scholarship from the University of Maryland was Paula Girven, Class of 1980, a track and field star for the Terps.

Athletes, Women — The first two women to receive athletic scholarships from the University of Maryland were Paula Girven, track and field, and Jane Connolly, basketball.  Both entered the university in the fall of 1976.

Athletic Directors — Fifteen individuals have held the title of Director of Athletics at the University of Maryland: Charles S. Richardson (1900s), Curley Byrd (1914-1935), L. B. Broughton (acting 1936), Geary Eppley (1937-1947), Walter Driskill (1947-1948), Jim Tatum (1948-1956), William W. Cobey (1956-1969), Jim Kehoe (1969-1978 and 1980-1981), Carl James (1978-1980), Dick Dull (1981-1986), Lew Perkins (1987-1990), Andy Geiger (1990-1994), Deborah Yow (1994-2010), Kevin Anderson (2010-2018), and Damon Evans (2018-present).

Prior to Richardson, the athletics department was primarily managed by an Athletic Association and executive council representing various sports. An Athletic Board consisting of about five members continued to provide support for athletics well after the advent of an official Athletic Director. In 1994, Deborah Yow became the first woman to hold this position. Kevin Anderson was the first African American to serve in this capacity, replacing Yow on October 1, 2010.

Athletic Hall of Fame — The M Club founded the University of Maryland Athletic Hall of Fame in 1982 as a joint project with the UMD Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.  The Hall of Fame pays tribute to Terrapin athletes, coaches, and administrators who have made significant contributions to the honor and fame of the university and have continued to demonstrate the positive values learned through competing in intercollegiate athletics.  Induction into the Hall of Fame is the highest honor the university can bestow on former athletes.  View a complete listing of the current Hall of Fame.

Atlantic Building — Formerly known as the Computer Science Building; constructed in 1963; renovated and expanded in 1996.  Designed by Johannes & Murray.