For immediate release: July 17, 2008
Contact: Christopher Falkenhagen
Communications: (410) 260-4511
MHEC assist. secretary to visit St. Mary’s County
(Annapolis, MD) July 17, 2008 – Maryland Higher Education
Assistant Secretary for Planning and Academic Affairs Dr. George
Reid will visit several of St. Mary’s County’s post-secondary
institutions today as part of Governor O’Malley’s Capital for a
Day initiative in Leonardtown, MD.
Leonardtown is the county seat of St. Mary’s. Often referred to
as “the Mother County,” St. Mary’s is Maryland’s home. It was
here that men and women disaffected by religious persecution set
off from England for the shores of St. Clement’s Island to
establish the colony that would one day become Maryland. Soon
after landing on St. Clement’s Island, they moved to St. Mary’s
City which became the first capital of Maryland.
“This was a bold, adventurous and I’m sure sometimes frightening
experience for these brave colonists,” Dr. Reid said of St.
Mary’s County’s original residents. “They struggled to survive,
build a new and great colony and to educate themselves and their
children. It could be said that the seeds of higher education in
Maryland were planted right here in St. Mary’s County. I believe
the Governor made the right choice to name Leonardtown as
Capital for a Day since it is so intertwined with the history of
such an important piece of Maryland’s early history.”
Secretary Reid will visit the Leonardtown campus of the College
of Southern Maryland. CSM is celebrating its 50th anniversary
this year. During the 2008 General Assembly Session, Governor
O’Malley budgeted $11.7 million for the Leonardtown campus’
After meeting with Leonardtown’s CSM Dean and Vice President F.J.
Talley and members of the Board of Trustees, Dr. Reid will tour
the Southern Maryland Higher Education Center.
Governor O’Malley provided $419,000 in funding for the SMHEC in
this year’s budget, a $69,000 increase over last year. Dr. Reid
will tour the facility and meet with staff and Board of
Governors of the highly respected Center.
From the SMHEC, Dr. Reid will visit the Blades School of Hair
Design, a Private Career School that falls within MHEC’s
oversight. Many of Blades’ students receive financial assistance
from MHEC which administers nearly $110 million in grants and
scholarships a year. Governor O’Malley fully funded this
scholarship program this year.
From Blades, Dr. Reid will end his trip at St. Mary’s College of
Maryland located in Historic St. Mary’s City. There, he will
meet with President Jane Margaret “Maggie” O’Brien and other
college officials to discuss areas of mutual interest to the
College and MHEC and tour the newly opened Goodpaster Hall, one
of the college’s nearly all-environmentally sensitive or “green
buildings.” St. Mary’s College of Maryland has become a national
leader in its approach to “going green” – an initiative that the
College’s students conceived a few years ago and have strongly
embraced ever since.
The Maryland Higher Education Commission is a 12-member
coordinating board responsible for establishing statewide
policies for Maryland public and independent colleges and
universities and private career schools. It serves as an
advocate for more than 325,000 college students in Maryland, for
the State and its needs, and for business and industry in