In a broad speech to the campus community, President Schatzel shared institutional achievements and announced plans to open a dedicated Transfer Student Center.
President Kim Schatzel delivered a galvanizing address to the Towson University campus on Thursday, sharing news on major student, faculty and academic achievements and making significant announcements related to two of her Presidential Priorities.
“This fall, Towson University welcomed an incoming class that is one of the largest, most academically prepared, and most diverse in TU’s 152-year history,” Schatzel said. “It is clear that the state of Towson University is indeed stronger than ever.”
The crescendo of the speech was Schatzel’s unveiling of a new Towson University brand identity. The identity features a new brand mark which culminates more than two years of research, collaboration and design as part of the TU Matters to Maryland presidential priority. The mark was revealed in a video documenting the evolution of TU’s visual identity. The brand mark will launch in January 2019.
“TU Matters to Maryland is a comprehensive communications strategy aimed at retelling the contemporary story of Towson University, and what makes TU distinct and valuable to the state of Maryland in 2018 and beyond,” Schatzel said. “I hope each of you will proudly wear and share this new TU brandmark as we boldly tell the contemporary story of TU; and together write the next chapter of TU’s story."
New services and support for students transferring into TU weighed heavily into the President’s address. She announced that a new Transfer Student Center will open in spring 2019, providing the first dedicated space on campus for prospective students to get on-demand course evaluation and advising before they enroll at TU. Earlier this year, the university opened the first residence hall for transfer students, hired two new transfer service positions and launched winter and summer transfer orientation programs. Schatzel shared these signs of progress on the TIGER Way presidential priority.
“[TIGER Way] is about providing dedicated services to meet the unique needs of our transfer, international and graduate student populations to support their success at TU,” Schatzel said. “When we announced this priority in 2016, we knew that almost 50 percent of our students transferred to TU from another institution of higher education.”
Schatzel announced that the university now has 80 2+2 transfer partnerships with Maryland community colleges—18 more than in 2016.
The President pointed to a breadth of esteemed faculty awards, research grants and academic recognitions as signs of Towson University’s continued prominence. English Professor Leslie Harrison was named a finalist for the National Book Award, Towson UTeach Director Linda Cooper was honored with the 2018 Outstanding Mathematics Educator Award, and Disability Support Services Director Susan Willemin received the first Board of Regents Staff Award in the category of inclusion, multiculturalism and social justice.
“What is also important about the significant accomplishments of our faculty and staff is the opportunities they create for our students,” Schatzel said.
Schatzel remarked on the broad impact of faculty research, referencing chemistry and biological science research projects that earned National Science Foundation grants totaling $500,000 and $730,000, respectively. Both projects are uncovering new information with significant implications for the public and for education. Professors John Sivey, Keith Reber, John LaPolla and Faith Weeks are working hand-in-hand with undergraduate students on the research.
The President’s address highlighted the more than $700 million in construction projects planned for campus, and noted them as a sign of Towson University’s momentum. This summer, the university opened a renovated Residence Tower and transformed the TU Marriott into The Residences at 10 West Burke Avenue. Schatzel shared that the new field hockey complex will be complete later this month. She also provided updates on the Brand New U, the new Science Complex, and private development projects happening throughout Towson.
“When you take a wider lens and consider the development on Towson University’s campus as well as near campus…there is more than $1.7 billion in public and private investment happening in Towson,” Schatzel said. “It is a truly historic revitalization that is arguably the most investment per square foot happening right now in Maryland. And it is driven by TU.”
Towson University’s next capital construction priority will be a new College of Health Professions building. Schatzel invited the campus community to join her in advocating for the new building to respond to state workforce demand. She said the state of Maryland has more than 25,000 unfilled health professions positions, and TU produces more graduates with health professions bachelor’s degrees than any other university in the state—public or private.
President Schatzel delivered the address to a crowd of faculty, staff and students gathered in the Harold J. Kaplan Concert Hall in TU’s Center for the Arts. She concluded her remarks by sharing some of the university’s key impact areas that create opportunities in Greater Baltimore and beyond.
“When I say it’s a great time to be a Tiger, it is because of strategic initiatives that launch all of our students into college and careers; innovative programs that power new ventures and drive Maryland’s economy; and important partnerships that anchor our region and make our community more vibrant for all its citizens,” Schatzel said. “There is much to be proud of at Towson University, and there are truly great things ahead!”