UMBC Watch

"I am excited about UMBC's rankings, which reflect the University's rapid progress. To be recognized among the country's leading research universities, while also maintaining our strong commitment to teaching, is a significant achievement."

--President Freeman A. Hrabowski, III

UMBC Leaps in Research Rankings

April 30, 2002--UMBC's ranking by the National Science Foundation for federally funded research in science and engineering has jumped by nearly 50 places in less than five years. This dramatic rise--from 200 in 1996 to 153 in 2000--is especially significant because most of the other nationally ranked institutions are substantially larger and older than UMBC. The new ranking places UMBC in the company of such schools as the University of California-Riverside and Texas Tech.

The leading federal funders of UMBC research include NASA, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Security Agency, and the new ranking reflects the growing impact of several major new research centers established at UMBC. These include the Goddard Earth Sciences and Technology Center, which is funded by NASA, and the Center for Urban Environmental Research and Education, which has funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. In addition, many faculty receive federal funding for individual research projects. One recent example is Professor Suzanne Rosenberg's Breast Cancer Undergraduate Research Experience (BCURE) Program, developed with funding from the Department of Defense.

UMBC's contracts and grants from all sources grew to $80.4 million in FY 2001--a 26% increase over $64 million the prior year. In another measure of UMBC's research strength, the Carnegie Foundation now classifies UMBC in its top tier of institutions, Doctoral/Research Extensive. Out of some 4,100 universities and colleges nationwide, UMBC is one of only 151 in this elite category.

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