Office of the President
Campus Messages

Creating our community

Message from President Darryll J. Pines

By Darryll J. Pines

My fellow Terrapins,

Welcome to the Spring 2023 semester! I hope you are looking forward to the new semester and the new year as much as I am.

At the beginning of the fall semester, I urged our community to focus on creating the university, community and world we want. Fearlessly Forward: The University of Maryland Strategic Plan serves as the roadmap for this mission and my presidential priorities remain: Pursue excellence in all we do, and create a diverse, multicultural campus.

Excellence in all we doIt's no surprise that our university continues to be celebrated for our academics and research enterprise. Just last month, we were once again recognized as a top 10 public U.S. research institution, according to the National Science Foundation's Higher Education Research and Development (HERD) survey, widely recognized as the preeminent national ranking for universities engaged in sponsored research.

Photograph of E.A. Fernandez IDEA Factory
Photograph of E.A. Fernandez IDEA Factory

Our faculty have shown that they continue to fearlessly take on the grand challenges of our time. Our Grand Challenges Grant program received an unprecedented number of submissions, leading us to add on a new and impactful category. These world-changing ideas—from racial equality to pandemic preparedness to climate change—have the potential for global impact. We look forward to announcing our awardees later this semester.

Excellence is achieved when we recruit the brightest diverse minds to our university, and one way we can do that is for forging pathways to higher education for low-income Marylanders. We call it the Terrapin Commitment, and it's the largest single-year investment in need-based scholarships in our university's history.

Our students continue to achieve excellence both inside and outside of the classroom. We are proud to have our eighth student in six years be awarded the Churchill Scholarship and the fourth Terp to be awarded the Senator George J. Mitchell Scholarship. Congrats Kevin Tu and Neelesh Mupparapu. We are also thrilled that our campus's commitment to leadership and civic engagement was recognized by ALL IN to Vote. We were named one of the Most Engaged Campuses for College Student Voting.

We also celebrate excellence in the arts. I encourage all Terps to visit our incredible art galleries and remind students of the free ticket program available through The Clarice. For all guests, performances at The Clarice this season have Pay What You Wish pricing, as a way to increase access to the arts.

Additionally, Athletics celebrated two tremendous accomplishments recently with our field hockey team's incredible run in the NCAA Tournament and our football team's big win in the Duke's Mayo Bowl. I encourage you all to show your support by attending upcoming Terps games—in all sports—this spring. Go Terps!

Creating a diverse, multicultural campusOnly months ago, we dedicated the final pieces of our Heritage Community, named for Maryland trailblazers Pyon Su, Chunjen Constant Chen, Elaine Johnson Coates and Hiram Whittle, and the ancestral stewards of our land, the Piscataway People. Pyon-Chen Hall, Johnson-Whittle Hall and Yahentamitsi Dining Hall now serve as proud and powerful reminders of our pursuit of a diverse multicultural campus.

Photograph of students outside of Johnson-Whittle Hall
Photograph of students outside of Johnson-Whittle Hall

Even as we continue our work within our community, we recognize that hate continues to grow and fester in our country and world. The recent hate-fueled attack of an Indiana University student reminds us that anti-Asian hate is still pervasive. And other groups continue to be targeted as well. As Rabbi Ari Israel and I recently wrote in the Washington Post, I truly believe that college campuses offer unique opportunities to eradicate hate and antisemitism in new and different ways, and that we can have a positive ripple effect on society.

And so we must recommit to this work. There are many ways for Terps to get involved in fostering an inclusive campus, including the BSU-UMD Social Justice Alliance's annual symposium, which will help participants develop tools and strategies to advance racial justice and healing. The Office of Diversity & Inclusion also has a robust calendar of trainings, workshops and listening sessions open to the campus community.

Fearlessly Forward

Photograph of McKeldin Mall during the winter
Photograph of McKeldin Mall during the winter

Again, welcome to a new semester and a new year. Let us use this opportunity to celebrate our accomplishments of the past year. Let us rededicate ourselves to striving for excellence in all we do and creating a diverse, multicultural community. And let us unite in support for one another to build a culture of care that focuses on the well-being and support for every member of our community, so that we may all fully participate and thrive in our world.


Signature of President Darryll Pines

Darryll J. Pines
President, University of Maryland, College Park