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Campus to expand classes

November 03, 2005|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

HAGERSTOWN

andrews@herald-mail.com

The flagship of Maryland's public university system will start an engineering program at Hagers-town's downtown campus in January 2006.

The University of Maryland, College Park, will be the fourth school in the University System of Maryland with classes in Hagerstown.

The University of Maryland, College Park, will offer master's degree and certificate engineering classes through "distance learning," with a teacher in one place and students somewhere else, watching through video screens.

C. David Warner III, the executive director of the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown campus, said a fifth school - Towson University - will open a nursing program there next fall.

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The Hagerstown campus opened in January 2005 with three colleges - Frostburg State University, University of Maryland University College and University of Maryland at Baltimore - and hopes of adding more.

Warner said the pace of expansion is better than he expected.

From the start, he and other campus officials looked at the Shady Grove education center in Rockville, Md., as a model and a goal.

The Shady Grove Center opened in 1993, mostly with evening classes through University of Maryland University College.

By the time the Hagerstown campus opened this year, the Universities at Shady Grove - the current name - included seven of the system's 11 degree-granting schools, with day and evening classes.

"This took 12 years to do," Warner said at the time.

The Hagerstown campus opened with three schools offering six bachelor's degree programs and five master's degree programs.

Warner said Wednesday that University of Maryland, College Park, and Towson University plan to have at least some day classes.

Most of the current classes at the campus are in the evening.

The University of Maryland, College Park, will offer nine professional master's of engineering degrees and six graduate engineering certificates.

Warner said the campus will hold a reception Dec. 1 from 2 to 3 p.m. so local businesses can get a sense of the engineering program.

An open house for the public, covering all of the campus' programs, will be held the same day from 5 to 7 p.m.

Towson University will offer two nursing bachelor's programs next fall. One will be a basic program. The other is for current registered nurses.

Warner said the basic bachelor's program will benefit Hagerstown Community College students taking nursing-related classes who can't get into a nursing program because there's a waiting list.

University of Maryland at Baltimore already offers a bachelor's degree program at the Hagerstown campus for current registered nurses.

Warner said he will continue recruiting other University System of Maryland schools and programs.

He said Wednesday that he had just met with another school considering offering classes in Hagerstown in the fall of 2007, but he wouldn't give details because no deal was in place yet.

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