From the President's Desk - Welcome to the New Year!

Dec 14, 2018 11:55 AM

Welcome to the New Year!

I hope everyone’s holidays and the beginning of the New Year have gone well. We are off to a great start in 2019 in Frostburg. I’d like to share a few highlights as we get into this New Year.

I will begin with our increased emphasis in the health-related fields of study, which have been developed because of increased student interest and expanded career opportunities. The Department of Nursing’s MSN nurse practitioner concentrations are now in their second semester. Nurses can pursue a career as a family nurse practitioner or psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioner. These new programs are in addition to our previous MSN concentrations focusing in education and administration. We also had an accreditation visit for the Master of Medical Studies in Physician Assistant Studies program, which we anticipate beginning this coming summer. We hope to receive approval for that program later this spring. At the undergraduate level, our programs in health science and in nursing continue to have excellent enrollments and success. Finally, our Department of Kinesiology and Recreation is developing a master’s degree program in athletic training in response to changes at the national level for accreditation.

Speaking of accreditation, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accepted our last report, and we are in full compliance. Our next on-campus site visit will be during the 2024-25 academic year.

We have also been busy on campus with upgrades to facilities and new construction. Annapolis Hall will be occupied this spring for the first time in two years. We’ve updated the rooms, added private bathrooms on each wing and added energy efficiencies, including LED lighting throughout the building. We are now turning our attention to Cumberland Hall and will have it completely renovated in time for next spring. We continue to examine our options for Cambridge Hall following the above-normal rain we received this year and the mold issues that resulted.

Regarding new construction, much of the site preparation work for the new residence hall is complete, and we the structural framework should start to appear as the weather improves this summer. We plan to have occupancy in fall of 2020 for the new hall, with 400-plus beds. And the design of the new Education and Health Sciences building is well under way. That building will be located between the Cordts PE Center and the Lane University Center.

While it’s great to talk about all these changes to campus, what continues to make this position so interesting and enjoyable to me is the students. You should be so proud of our current students. On Election Day, they turned out in impressive numbers to cast their votes as engaged citizens. Storybook Holiday, which would not have been possible without our student involvement, had record crowds, with over 1,200 parents and children turning out on a rainy day to celebrate the holidays, create crafts, meet a children’s book author and shop downtown. (Take a look at this video of all the fun.) Our student-athletes excelled this fall, with our football team winning the NJAC title outright and hosting two NCAA Division III playoff games. Our coaches and student-athletes look forward to the transition to DII next fall.

I would be remiss not to mention the artistic talents of our students in the visual and performing arts. We had wonderful theatre productions this fall, great art exhibitions and a number of musical performances culminating in one of the best, if not the best, holiday concerts in December. All of these events were open to the community and reinforced our commitment to the region.

I hope you enjoyed this update. Please by when you are on campus or say hello when you see FSU in your community.

My best to you, and Go Bobcats!