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Education Week says Maryland schools No. 1 in country

Maryland schools make the grade with a B and taking the honors as the state with the best schools in the U.S., according to a new report from the publishers of Education Week.

Here's an excerpt:

"The nation earned a C on the 14th annual Education Week report card, which measures how well states have delivered a high-quality education to all students, with Maryland earning the best overall grade of any state and Virginia placing in the top five, with a B minus.

Maryland scored a B plus and was followed by Massachusetts and New York, which both earned a B. Most states got grades of C or lower.

The annual Quality Counts report, a publication from Editorial Projects in Education, which publishes the trade magazine Education Week, rated and ranked the 50 states and the District in six areas of education performance and policy."

Read the full article here.

Five Maryland schools make the cut in Kiplinger's "Best Values in Public Colleges" list

With University of Maryland College Park at  leading the way, five Maryland universities have made it on to Kilplinger's list of "Best Values in Public Colleges." The annual list, included in the magazine's February issue, gives the lowdown on the top 100 schools that give students - and their  cash-strapped parents - the most for their hard earned loot in this fractious economy.

Joining College Park on the list were: St. Mary's College, Salisbury University, University of Maryland, Baltimore County and Towson University.

Here's an excerpt:

"Over the past few years, the University of Maryland at College Park has made its way with tortoise-like tenacity (and hare-like speed) into our top ten, jumping from number 28 in February 2008 to number 8 in 2010. This flagship institution, known for its engineering, journalism and computer-science programs (and, of course, its terrapin mascot), has risen to the top by keeping in-state costs virtually unchanged while improving on quality, especially in its graduation rates.

That success comes largely from an ongoing campaign to reduce waste and boost efficiency, including the efficiency with which students collect a degree. The university spends thousands more than it charges to educate in-staters, says President Dan Mote, making perennial students costly to both their parents and the university. "It's a lose-lose situation," says Mote. To keep the kids on track, the university has boosted counseling, encouraged students to settle on a major and insisted that they take full course loads. Says Mote, "We told them that it's time to achieve.""

Read the entire article here.

UMBC Prez Hrabrowski interviewed on the CBS Evening News

Dr. Freeman Habrowski, president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County appeared on the CBS Evening news last Wednesday in its 'Where America Stands' offering his take on what needs to happen with education to help prepare the U.S. workforce to be competitive in the future.

Click ahead to 5:00 minutes.

Art students let the city be your muse

MetropolisMag.com monthly contributor Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson suggests that Baltimore art students would do well to leave campus and seek out the myriad sources of inspiration in the city.

An excerpt from the blog reads:

For as long as I can remember, designers and educators in Baltimore have invoked the name of the Rural Studio. They looked south to Hale County and wondered how to adapt Mockbee's full-immersion program for design students in an urban setting like Baltimore. The conversations were, pardon the pun, purely academic. In spite of a high number of colleges and universities in the regionówith several programs in architecture, planning, and landscape designócurricula rarely called for students to venture beyond the quadrangle (save for the requisite study-abroad programs).

There were barriers in getting students off the campus, most of them perceived and not wholly accurate. The belief was that it wasn't safe "out there" and using the real world as a classroom was hazardous. I remember chatting with one frustrated professor at Johns Hopkins about this a few years back. He was politely told he should not encourage students to take public transportation for a class project lest "something should happen."

This insular stance resulted in a real deficit of academic and applied research on urban issues in this city. Other schools of architecture have successfully developed urban lab models, creating reciprocal relationships with city government and community groups. Schools like Carnegie Mellon and its Urban Studio. If it could happen in Pittsburgh, then why not here?

Read the entire article here.

UMBC earns top ranking as up-and-coming university

University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) tops the list of up-and-coming national universities compiled by U.S. News & World Reports. The magazine's annual report ranks universities across multiple categories. The 2010 ranking was the first time the magazine's editors used peer assessment surveys in its calculation of the top schools.

UMBC beat out 69 other universities for the No. spot. Here's an excerpt:

This spring, for the first time, U.S. News asked the experts who respond to its annual peer assessment survey to identify schools that fit this profile. The 70 that received the most nominations range from household names like the University of Southern California to Grand Valley State in Allendale, Mich., and Salve Regina, a 2,000-student Catholic university in Newport, R.I.

University of Maryland--Baltimore County
Baltimore, MD
Rank 1
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA
Rank 2
Northeastern University
Boston, MA
Rank 2
Drexel University
Philadelphia, PA
Rank 4
Arizona State University
Tempe, AZ
Rank 5

To read more go here.

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