HAGERSTOWN— Mark Halsey, associate director for Finance and Administration for Distance Learning at Virginia Tech, has been named the new executive director of the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown. Halsey, who was chosen from a field of 69 applicants, will assume his duties on May 21.
“Mark’s experiences in higher education administration at Virginia Tech and throughout a 30-year career make him an ideal selection as the next director of the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown,” said Dr. William E. “Brit” Kirwan, chancellor of the University System of Maryland. “Mark has clearly demonstrated strong consensus-building and organizational skills, working with numerous constituencies. I know this critical regional center in Western Maryland will thrive under his leadership.”
“I am honored to have been chosen to lead the team of talented individuals that comprises the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown. Since its inception, USMH has afforded the people of Washington County and the surrounding areas with significant access to higher education,” said Halsey. “Its establishment in Western Maryland is a testament to the vision of Chancellor Kirwan, the University System Board of Regents and, most particularly, the civic and legislative leaders of Hagerstown and Washington County. There is no doubt about our growth potential, and I’m excited to get started!”
In his current position, Halsey is responsible for distance learning, including budgeting, purchasing, facilities and contract management. He coordinates with academic departments and faculty participating in the Enterprise Fund, an innovative approach to incentive budgeting for new program growth. He works with departments and faculty to identify and assess the financial feasibility of new distance programs.
“We look forward to working with Mark as the next leader of USMH as he builds on the strong foundation that has been established so that we can continue to grow higher education opportunities for area residents,” said Tim Palkovitz, USMH Advisory Board chair.
Halsey will be charged with leading the Hagerstown center to continue to meet the needs of students in the region by broadening existing programs, developing new programs and maintaining and expanding relations with area community colleges.
“I look forward to working with the community colleges in Hagerstown and Frederick as we collaborate to provide educational pathways for students to complete their first two years at HCC or FCC and then go on to earn bachelor’s and possibly master’s degrees through programs offered at USMH,” said Halsey.
Prior to joining Virginia Tech in 2007, Halsey was a regional director of distance learning at Old Dominion University. Additionally, he served as an associate professor of management and department chair with Eastern University in Pennsylvania. He also served as a director with two management consulting firms, and has continued a part-time practice in the areas of nonprofit strategic planning and organizational development. He has been invited as a visiting professor and/or consultant to institutions in Lithuania, China, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Guatemala, Bolivia and South Africa, among others.
Halsey has an MBA from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in management and public administration from James Madison University, and he has done extensive coursework toward a doctorate in public policy at UMBC.
“I am so pleased with the appointment of Mark Halsey to be the next executive director of USMH,” said Dr. Jonathan Gibralter, president of Frostburg State University, which is the coordinating institution for USMH. “He brings with him solid experience in working collaboratively within a community to develop substantive academic programs. I want to thank the members of the search committee for their role throughout this process. I truly believe they have identified a person who will lead USMH to the next level in its evolution.”
Halsey succeeds Dr. David Warner, who became vice president for Academic Affairs at Hagerstown Community College after leading USMH since it opened in 2005. Dr. John Stoothoff, a member of the FSU faculty, has been serving as interim director.
The University System of Maryland at Hagerstown is a regional higher education center offering upper-level undergraduate and graduate programs from six respected universities within the University System of Maryland. More than 23 programs of study are available to area students in one convenient downtown Hagerstown location.