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Office of Undergraduate Education

Undergraduate Education News Archives

A new look for OUE

Welcome to the new web look for the Office of Undergraduate Education. The new site retains all former URLs, so all links to OUE should still work. We are moving to a more visual site with fewer words. Please let us know what you think and what else you would like to be able to find on the site. Our thanks to the New Media Studio for the design and migration of the site.

Welcome new UMBC residents

If you are seeing this, you have likely moved in and successfully connected your computer. Welcome to UMBC. The Office of Undergraduate Education (OUE) offers many programs and resources to assist you in making a strong academic start at UMBC. Look through the links under First-Year Programs for information and assistance as you settle in.

New Transfer Computer Science Students

Ready to advance your career? CMSC 291 helps you update your professional resume and refine your career plans. Meet in person with senior computer science faculty who can help you to find your niche in the field. Get to know how things work at UMBC and how to be most successful in your education here. This one-credit course is open to incoming CMSC and CMPE transfer students enrolled in any 200-level or higher CMSC course. Add CMSC 291to your fall course schedule during your UMBC orientation session.

URA Scholar on Air

Tune in to "The Signal" on Friday, October 9, for their feature on the work of URA Scholar Patrick Rife and his creative work “The Cyclical Nature of Obsolescence.” You can hear "The Signal on the NPR affiliate WYPR at 88.1 FM at 12 noon and 7p.m. If you can't get to a radio during that time you'll be able to download a podcast of the segment from "The Signal's" website.

UMBC Undergrad on The Signal

Tune in to "The Signal" on Friday, October 9, for their feature on the work of UMBC undergraduate Patrick Rife and his creative work “The Cyclical Nature of Obsolescence.” Rife is developing this creative project with an Undergraduate Research Award (

You can hear "The Signal" on the NPR affiliate WYPR at 88.1 FM at 12 noon and 7p.m. If you miss the broadcast, you can download a podcast of the segment from "The Signal" website.

Relin Event Free, Open to the Public

David Oliver Relin, author of Three Cups of Tea, will speak in the University Center Ballroom on Tuesday, November 10 at 7 p.m. A book signing will follow. Free public parking will be available for this event in campus lots 8 and 9 on either side of Hilltop Road, just inside Hilltop Circle. Signs will direct visitors from parking to the Ballroom. The event is free and open to the public.

Summer Research Opportunities

Hundreds of paid summer research opportunities are linked from .
Now is the time to select the right programs and begin the application process.
Deadlines in January and February.
For additional help, go to

In your first year at UMBC?

Pick one of these courses for Spring 2010. All are limited to students new to UMBC and accept 25 or fewer students per course.
First-Year Seminars (three credits)
Introduction to an Honors University (one credit)

To support the work of the Office of Undergraduate Education

To help support the work of the Office of Undergraduate Education, gifts can be made through Support UMBC, by listing "Office of Undergraduate Education" in the "Other Designation" field.

The Translator will be the 2010 campus book

The Translator by Daoud Hari has been selected for the New Student Book Experience at UMBC. This book describes Hari's years growing up in Sudan and chronicles his work as a translator for journalists and human rights workers. All incoming students will be expected to read The Translator and participate in campus discussions during Welcome Week in August. The book is available in the campus bookstore. For more information:

Great Course for New Students

If Spring will be your first or second semester at UMBC, you are eligible to enroll in POLI 100 Y, American Government and Politics. This course teaches valuable information for any American and is the introductory course for any Political Science major or minor.

Today's Social Revolution

Freshmen and new transfer students, sign up for Aging 100Y to learn about this growing field, the related job opportunities, and they ways that aging is changing. Aging 100 Y - So You Say You Want a Revolution: How Boomers Are Revolutionizing Aging. Add this course through myUMBC.

Undergraduate Research Funding

Do you have an idea for independent research, scholarship, or creative work you would like to complete over the summer or through the next academic year? Apply for an Undergraduate Research Award of up to $1,500 to support your work. Learn how to write a strong proposal: Friday, January 29 from 3:00 to 3:50 p.m. in Administration Building Room 911. For more information .

Need Culture Credit?

Try GES 102Y: Human Geography. This four-credit course includes a weekly Honors University section for students in their first year at UMBC (freshmen and transfer students) Add via myUMBC.

Looking forward to Math 106 this semester?

Sign up for Math 106Y. The "Y" section includes one additional small-group section each week and earns you one additional credit - four credits instead of three. The Y meetings include study techniques and are designed to help create a strong foundation for future courses.

Social Science Summer Research in China - Paid

Twelve undergraduates and a team of faculty mentors will research the impact of economic development and societal change on China’s already precarious environmental position across the Yellow River Loess Plateau. The program will be from June 21to August 1, 2010. Students will engage in the complete process of designing a research agenda and performing primary research in the social sciences at an international field site. Student participation is encouraged from all fields of the social sciences, including sociology, anthropology, geography, environmental studies, economics, political science, Asian studies, and history. Juniors and non-graduating seniors are particularly encouraged to apply.

The Next Big Thing

Jobs are growing in policy and management of aging services. Learn about the opportunities in Aging 200Y Aging People, Policy, and Management. Students in their first year at UMBC, as freshmen or transfer students, should pick the Y section of this class. This course meets a Social Science General Education requirement.

New to UMBC? Try This

If this will be your first or second semester at UMBC, you are eligible to enroll in POLI 100 Y, American Government and Politics. This course teaches valuable information for any American and is the introductory course for any Political Science major or minor.

Need a Culture Credit?

There is still time to add GES 102Y Human Geography. This four-credit course meets the culture requirement and includes a weekly Honors University section for students in their first year at UMBC (freshmen and transfer students) Add via myUMBC. GES 110Y Physical Geography and or GES 120 Y Environmental Science and Conservation meet the science general education requirement.

Student Research Award Applications Accepted

Undergraduates planning independent research or creative work for the summer or next academic year can apply for up to $1,500 to support their work. Start now to have a competitive application ready by the March 3 deadline.

Undergraduate Research in Ancient Studies

The exhibit, "New Perspectives on Old Views", is now on display in the
Albin O. Kuhn Library Rotunda. Ancient Studies majors, Katie Bentz, Sarah
Carney, Catherine Pasqualoni, and Christina Ross, curated this exhibit,
selecting 19th-century photographs in the holdings of Special Collections
and more recent photographs taken by Ancient Studies students and faculty.
The subject of the photographs are classical temples of Athens.

How to Win Funding

Interested in an Undergraduate Research Award of up to $1,500 to support your independent research, scholarship, or creative work next year? Learn how to write a competitive two-page proposal. Monday, February 15, 12:00 - 12:50 p.m. in Sondheim 105.

Students Needed for Summer Research

Seeking Biology or GES student to work full time on outdoor summer research on the Eastern Shore for credit or pay. Looking for two students with basic computer skills. Prior GIS/GPS experience a plus as well as any outdoor field experience. For details contact Dr. Bernard Lohr. For other summer research opportunities, go to

Immediate Research Opportunity - Health Care

Paid research in HAPP starting immediately. Apply by e-mail this weekend. Sophomore with 3.5 GPA and HAPP major preferred. Other majors and years OK if interested in health care research. Must have own transportation.

FEATURED RESEARCHER: Betty Irungu, Political Science

Read about Senior Betty Irungu and her research on ethnic identity in Kenya. Her study included analyzing the effect of the reforms in Kenya governance on citizenship in that country. Most unexpected part of doing research as an undergraduate, "my excitement in finding other scholars who share my interests!"

Undergraduate Research News

On Facebook: Undergraduate Research @ UMBC. Become a fan. Read about student researchers. Hear about new opportunities.

Volunteer for URCAD

Sign up today to volunteer during Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement Day, Wednesday, April 28. Volunteers needed 8 a.m. to 10 a.m., 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. E-mail your preferred time to . Learn about the great research done by fellow students, enjoy this dynamic event, and serve the UMBC community. Service groups welcome. Thank you!

Ever want to design your own musuem?

Franki Trout, Danielle Viens-Payne, and Kelly-Lynne Russell did! You can walk through their exhibition in Virtual Worlds. See a demonstration at URCAD on April 28, 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in UC 115.

Fighting Brain Tumors

Priyanka Bushana is studying aggressive brain tumors and how they can be made less resistant to chemotherapy. Learn about her work at URCAD. Wednesday, April 28, University Center Room 310, 1:45 to 2:00 p.m.

Studying (Gender) Abroad

Alyssa studied the politics of gendered law reform in the Caribbean. Sabah investigated resistance in the Indigenous communities of Australia. Sarah researched the impact of youth activism on gender dynamics in Mali. Do you want to hear fantastic stories from your peers? Are you curious about how to incorporate your interests into your study abroad experience? Come to this brownbag discussion. April 14th, 2010 12:00pm The Women's Center (Commons 004)

Do you have a high need for cognition?

"Need for cognition" is an enjoyment of and participation in effortful cognitive activities. UMBC undergraduate Tahira Mahdi investigated the relationship between high need for cognition and wearing glasses. What did she find? Ask her at URCAD on April 28 at 3:30 in UC 310.

Fruit Flies and Stem Cells

UMBC undergraduate Archana Murali has been studying the stem cells of fruit flies with Dr. Michelle Starz-Gaiano. Come to URCAD on April 28 and ask Achana what she has learned. She will present her results in the University Center Ballroom from 12:30 to 3:00p.m.

How effective is pre-implantation genetic screening?

What at the ethical considerations? Does it work? Ask Richard Blissett about his analysis of this issue. Come to URCAD, Wednesday April 28. Hear Richard's presentation at 3:45 p.m. Iin UC 312. Student researchers will be presenting throughout the day.

Tracking the Eastern Mud Turtle far and wide!

Ask Becca Reeves how she tailed the

Fighting Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem. Experiments with E. coli may lead to ways to reduce this resistance. Asmara Qamar will explain the science at URCAD on Wednesday, April 28. Come to the poster areas in the University Center Ballrooom. Asmara will be there from 12:30 to 3:00 p.m. Learn something new!

Virtual Reality Comes to URCAD

Do you have an avatar in Second Life or Virtual World? Have you visited the art gallery Life as Dance in Virtual World? Life as Dance was built by Franki L. Trout, Danielle Viens-Payne, Kelly-Lynne Russell for a UMBC honors seminar. To tour their museum, come to URCAD's newest venue, UC 115, on Wednesday April 28 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. You can also visit the virtual UMBC classroom where Virtual World construction is taught and try your hand at construction. Never heard of any of this? Get your first experience with virtual reality at URCAD.

Remember the double helix?

Is it possible to create new "letters" in the genetic alphabet? Should we? Why would we want to? Goldwater Scholar Nathaniel Kim can explain all this. Attend his URCAD talk on Wednesday, April 28 at 1:30 p.m. in UC 310. If you need to report on an URCAD presentation for a course assignment, this is a great choice. Nate will bring to life the complexities and possibilities of this research.

A Pico-what? How big is that?

James Gerity and Tyler Schmitz have designed a pico-satellite to study the structure of clouds. They will explain their work during the URCAD poster session, Wednesday, April 28 from 12:30 to 3:00 p.m. at Poster Number 119. For a full URCAD schedule, go to

The Translator: Campus-Wide Discussion

The New Student Book Experience welcomes all members of the campus community to read and discuss The Translator by Daoud Hari, this year's campus book. The book discussion gives new students the opportunity to meet other incoming students and make connections with faculty. Discussions will take place during Welcome Week on Monday, August 30th from 11:00AM - 12:00PM and will continue in fall and spring English 100 classes. For more information:

NIH Research Opportunity

Four-day research-intensive program for college seniors at National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Application deadline October 15. For students with strong academic standing who are from populations underrepresented in biomedical research. Held at NIH in Bethesda Feb 7 - 10, 2011. Travel, hotel, and meals paid.

Great Course for Researchers - Fall 2010

ENES 200: Introduction to Entrepreneurship - Wednesday from 4:30 -7:00pm.
Taught by a practicing entrepreneur, this course will cover topics such as
opportunity recognition, market assessment, feasibility plan, how to
structure a new venture, pricing strategies, legal issues, and financing
the product or service. Students will develop a business plan as part of
the course. The course is listed under Engineering Sciences in the
catalog and is open to ALL MAJORS.

Great Way to Get Science Credit

New to UMBC? There is still time to add GES 110Y Physical Geography to your schedule for this fall. This four-credit course includes a weekly Honors University section for students in their first year at UMBC (freshmen and transfer students) Add via myUMBC. GES 110Y Physical Geography meets the science,non-lab, general education requirement.

New to UMBC?

Find out what the Office of Undergraduate Education can do for you. This Open House is for students new to UMBC. Learn about helpful first-year experiences, research opportunities open to new students, and pathways to outstanding academic success. Thursday, September 2 at 4 p.m. in Administration Building Room 911. .

Undergraduate Research in Political Science

See what undergraduate David Pourshoushtari learned about public perceptions of Supreme Court justices. Learn how to find undergraduate research opportunities in the social science.

Researching Dance?

UMBC undergraduate Franki Trout received funding through an Undergraduate Research Award to study the ideas and principles of the Limón dance technique. Her research project involves mastering the Limón technique and the principles of fall and recovery, breath, suspension, and musicality that are characteristic of it. She is applying these ideas to her own artistic vision and creating a dance performance work that uses the principles of Limón technique in a new and exciting way. Are you a dancer or artist with an idea for an undergraduate research project? Read about how Franki came to apply for this award.

Math Lab and Writing Center: Where did they go?

The Math Lab and the Writing Center are two of the best UMBC resources for students.Drop in for help with formulas, functions, & beyond.Walk in with your next writing assignment for any class and get advice on how to make it shine. But where are they? Starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, September 14 the Math Lab and the Writing Center can be found on the first floor of the library, just behind the glass quiet area. If you prefer a regular appointment with a tutor to help you understand your class, go to and sign up for a tutor. Tutoring takes place in Academic IV B-wing, room 345. For A students and those who want to be: The Learning Resources Center.

Did you Like The Translator

The Translator by Daoud Hari was the New Student Book Experience (NSBE) book for 2010. Did you like it? Was it a good choice for welcoming new students to intellectual life at UMBC? What book would be just as good or better? Each year the book for NSBE is selected from nominations by students, faculty and staff. Review the goals and selection criteria for NSBE and nominate your favorite book today.

Suggest the next campus book on Facebook

What should new UMBC students read next year? Nominate the book you think would be best for the New Student Book Experience. Now you can nominate on Facebook. Once you suggest a book, you can choose to post your suggestion on Facebook and ask your friends to also suggest books. New students this year really liked The Translator. Can we find something just as engaging for next year? There is also a non-Facebook online form for nominations.

CS/EE students needed as researchers

Junior or Senior computer science/electrical engineering undergraduates needed to help in developing operant conditioning experimental apparatus for use in biology/psychology experiments with birds. Must have Matlab programming skills and familiarity with basic computer and electronic hardware. Circuit-building skills and previous experience with signal processing a plus. Students will assist in building experimental hardware and in programming Tucker-Davis signal processing modules ( to interface with experimental hardware. A variety of designs are anticipated, which may lead to several different student projects involving independent study credit (399 or 499). If interested, please contact Dr. Bernie Lohr (blohr “at”

Undergraduate Research Assistants Needed

Join an active research team. This work focuses on the factors and conditions that create and maximize success for underrepresented groups in engineering and IT majors and fields. Undergraduate Research Assistant positions are for five hours per week for both fall and spring semester. Unpaid, but may earn academic credit. Research assistants must have at least a 3.0 GPA and possess strong writing skills and the ability to work both independently and as a team member. Must be willing to learn EndNote software and be available to meet with the other members of the research team. Some experience with using the UMBC library’s online search procedures and familiarity with APA citation style preferred. Apply through UMBCworks. For more information Dr. Susan Martin, CWIT Associate Director,, phone: (410) 455-3109

Performance Art at UMBC

Visual and Performing Arts student Theresa Columbus will be performing her piece "The Artist Statement" in the Fine Arts Amphitheater September 16 and 17 at 7 PM. She says, "You will be both outside and inside, and you might be amazed." Check out this action in the Amphitheater on the "construction" side of the Fine Arts building.

For Students Interested in MD/PhD Programs

Plan to attend the MD/PhD Roadshow on Monday, October 4 at 12 noon in LH 3. MD/PhD program directors from Johns Hopkins, University of Maryland Baltimore, and University of Pennsylvania will be here to meet with students. The event is open to the campus.

Discover Research Opportunities for Undergraduates

You can join a research team or design your own research or creative project, starting now. Learn how at the Undergraduate Research Consultation held on Friday, October 22 at noon in Lecture Hall 3 in the Administration Building. These students found valuable research experiences. You can, too. Now is the time to select your research location for Summer 2011. Find out how to get a great placement.

Wish you had help preparing for grad school?

Check out the McNair Scholars program, accepting applications until October 29. McNair scholars conduct research in their field (including social sciences and humanities), present at national conferences, and prepare strong graduate school applications. Must be sophomore or above and have at least a 2.7 GPA. Pick up application today in MP room 213.

Employers Looking for Science Students

Engineering; BIOL; CHEM; CMPE; CMSC; ENGM; IS; MATH;BINF; ECON ; FIEC; PHYS; BTEC; ENCH; ENEE, all science majors

You Are Invited to a Diversity Recruitment Event
ALL Students are Welcome to Attend

Tuesday, October 26, 2010
University Center Ballroom
Register Today:
This is an excellent opportunity to networking with top employers who want to hire students in your major, including

· Constellation Energy Group
· National Security Agency
· SRA International Inc.
· T. Rowe Price
· Target
· General Electric Company
· Osiris Therapeutics
· Osiris Therapeutics, Inc.
· Morgan Stanley
· NRD Philadelphia Officer Recruiting
· Accenture
· Space Telescope Science Institute
· U.S. Department of State
· Federal Highway Administration

Summer 2011 NIST SURF applications are out

Science, Engineering, Math, and Computer Science students check out the paid summer research fellowship at NIST. If you are considering applying to this program, sign up now for more information by e-mailing Ten UMBC students were research fellows at NIST last summer. Students in all years as well as graduating seniors may apply to this summer research program.


Entering freshmen check out summer CSI at UMBC. Enroll in Collegiate Success Institute to earn college credit this summer and prepare for a great freshman year.

Sneak a Peek!

Check out these student presentations scheduled for Wednesday, April 27 from 9:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the University Center and Fine Arts Building.

Start now to find research opportunities

Any major, any year, even students new to UMBC can find research and independent creative opportunities. Free how-to session, Wednesday September 7 at noon in Admin 911.

New to UMBC?

Check out these courses, which meet GEP requirements and are designed for freshmen and transfer students in their first semester at UMBC:
FYS 101 S Creating Stories about Times of Change - This course explores common themes in both adolescence and aging, stages in life that can transform a person’s sense of identity.
IHU Y Sections - a great way to add a credit and jump-start your UMBC career
Just for Transfer Students courses in IS, CS, and MLLI

After you move in...

Find out about the Office of Undergraduate Education. Open House Wednesday, August 31, 2 p.m. Administration Building, Room 911. Inside information on making the most of your time at UMBC.

Did you read

Outcasts United? Find out who else did. Talk about the campus book on Monday, August 29 at 3 p.m. Ask your Woolie where your discussion will be.

Our office moved!

Looking for undergraduate petitions? Information about undergraduate research? Support for students new to UMBC? The Office of Undergraduate Education is now located in Academic IV, A Wing, Suite 114. Come by and see us.

New Students - Read This!

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot will be the UMBC campus book read by new students arriving in August, 2012. The book is already available in the bookstore at 30 percent off!

Find a Great Course

New Students,

Check out these small classes designed for incoming freshmen and transfer students. Also consider a First-Year Seminar (FYS). For an FYS, professors select a topic they are passionate about and teach only one section of it to a group of only 20 incoming students. Both freshmen and transfer students can take these special courses, which meet GEP requirements. Sign up now while classes still have room!

Transfer Students

Welcome to UMBC! See resources and programming designed just for you:

Meet the Family!

The whole campus was talking about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks on August 27. You can meet her son David Lacks on October 9. Mr. Lacks and Dr. Ruth Faden at bioethicist at Johns Hopkins will speak at 7 p.m. in the University Center ballroom. Free and open to all.

Want to share your research? Try URCAD.

February 27 is the deadline for applying for Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement Day (URCAD).

Need Funding? Consider URA.

Apply for up to $1,500 to carry out your undergraduate research, scholarship, or creative work. Apply by March 4 for an Undergraduate Research Award (URA)

Links: Learning Resource Center | Women's Center | Sherman Scholars | Meyerhoff Scholars Program | Honors College

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