The University System of Maryland comprises eleven campuses and two major research and service components. It is the twelfth-largest university system in the nation.

The System's earliest unit was founded in Baltimore in 1807 as the College of Medicine of Maryland (Chapter 53, Acts of 1807). In 1812, the College expanded its professional curricula and changed its name to the University of Maryland (Chapter 159, Acts of 1812).

In 1856, the Maryland State College of Agriculture was founded at College Park. It merged in 1920 with the Baltimore professional schools to form an enlarged University of Maryland with campuses at Baltimore (UMAB) and College Park (UMCP) (Chapter 480, Acts of 1920). In 1959, the College of Special and Continuation Studies (founded 1947) became the University of Maryland University College (UMUC). The Baltimore County campus (UMBC) was established in 1966. In 1970, the University of Maryland was organized into a five-campus system. At that time, the Maryland State College in Princess Anne (founded 1886) was restructured to form the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES).

The University of Maryland achieved land-grant status in 1865 (UMCP) and 1890 (UMES) and was designated a national sea grant college in 1983.

As the components of the former University of Maryland were evolving, so too were the State's teachers colleges. The earliest of these was founded privately in 1865 in Baltimore to train African-American teachers. It later became a State institution, moved to Bowie, and assumed the name Bowie State University. In 1866, the first public teachers college formed as the Maryland State Normal School, now Towson State University. State Normal School no. 2, now Frostburg State University, followed in 1898. In 1900, the Baltimore City School Board laid the foundation for what would become Coppin State College. The first normal school on the Eastern Shore opened in 1925 and now bears the name Salisbury State University. In 1963, these five former teachers colleges were brought together under the direction of a single governing body: the Board of Trustees of the State Universities and Colleges. In 1975, the University of Baltimore, privately founded fifty years earlier, joined the campuses governed by the Board.

The University of Maryland System was created in 1988 through the merger of campuses and components of the University of Maryland with those formerly under the Board of Trustees of the State Universities and Colleges (Chapter 246, Acts of 1988). In 1997, the System was renamed the University System of Maryland (Chapter 114, Acts of 1997).

Campuses of the University are located in Allegany County at Frostburg (Frostburg State University); Baltimore City (UMB, Coppin State College, University of Baltimore); Baltimore County at Catonsville (UMBC) and at Towson (Towson University); Prince George's County at Bowie (Bowie State University) and College Park (UMCP); Somerset County at Princess Anne (UMES); and Wicomico County at Salisbury (Salisbury State University). From its headquarters in the Center of Adult Education at College Park, University College administers adult and continuing education courses and programs at sites across Maryland and in Europe and Asia. The University System of Maryland also has developed an academic and research center at Shady Grove in Montgomery County and an academic center in Baltimore City.


The Board of Regents governs the University System of Maryland. The Board may issue revenue bonds to finance the building of dormitories and other student housing facilities. The Board issues such bonds directly, with the payments of principal and interest made from revenues realized from the use of the building.

With Senate advice and consent, the Governor appoints the seventeen-member Board of Regents. Sixteen members serve five-year terms and a student member is appointed for a one-year term. The Secretary of Agriculture serves ex officio (Code Education Article, secs. 12-101 through 12-103).


System Administration directs and coordinates the thirteen institutions of the University System of Maryland. The System includes eleven degree-granting institutions and two major research and public service components: the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, and the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute.

Located in Adelphi, System Administration serves as staff to the Board of Regents and is headed by the Chancellor.

Appointed by the Board of Regents, the Chancellor is a member of the Hall of Records Commission; the State Information Technology Board; the Police Training Commission; the Procurement Advisory Council; the Segmental Advisory Council; and the Southern Regional Education Board. The Chancellor also serves on the Board of Directors, University of Maryland Medical System Corporation; and the Regional Education Service Agency of Appalachian Maryland.

Under the Chancellor are Academic Affairs; Administration and Finance; and Advancement.

For the University System of Maryland, Academic Affairs plans courses, programs and academic calendars; coordinates research grants and projects; and monitors and reports degrees and enrollments. This office is accountable to the Maryland Higher Education Commission and the General Assembly, and addresses issues of student transfer between the System and other Maryland institutions.

Under Academic Affairs are three offices: Articulation; Federal Relations; and Research Policy.

To ensure that higher education resources are allocated wisely, Administration and Finance plans and coordinates operating and capital budgets for the University System of Maryland. Administrative computing and telecommunications services also are provided by this office.

Under Administration and Finance are six offices: Budget Analysis; Capital Planning; Financial Affairs; Human Resources; Information Technology; and Internal Audit.

Advancement conducts fund-raising to find alternative sources of income for the University System of Maryland and directs cooperative efforts among institutions for obtaining grants. The office also is responsible for State government relations and communications.

Under Advancement are four offices: Advancement Services; Development; Communications; and State Relations.

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 Maryland Manual On-Line, 2001

April 1, 2001   
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