October 2009 Press
release: October 5, 2009 Media Contact: Christopher Falkenhagen
Communications: (410) 260-4511
MHEC September 2009 Governor's Report
September 1-30: Communications and Legislative Associate mailed out 150
congratulatory letters to Maryland Distinguished Scholar honorees.
September 1-2, 2009: Secretary Lyons attended the National Historically Black
Colleges and Universities Conference in Washington, D.C. He also made a
presentation at one of the conferences break-out sessions.
September 2, 2009: Secretary Lyons and Director of Communications attended
Governor O’Malley’s Executive Pandemic Influenza Briefing which also featured
all members of the governor’s cabinet as well as his staff. Governor O’Malley
implored his cabinet and staff that he wanted Maryland to be the best prepared
in the State when it comes to dealing with the H1N1 Swine Flu pandemic.
September 3, 2009: MHEC’s Planning and Academic Affairs staff held a retreat at
Anne Arundel Community College. Secretary Lyons discussed latest developments of
the College Alignment/Success Task Force.
September 3, 2009: Director of Finance Policy held fourth meeting of the
University System of Maryland at Hagerstown Center Workgroup to discuss and
begin preparation for report on workgroup students due November 1.
September 7, 2009: Associate Director of Career Education was interviewed by
WBAL’s Deborah Weiner about how and why MHEC issues cease and desist orders to
private career schools and about its oversight of private career schools in
September 9, 2009: MHEC’s Education Policy Committee was held. Items discussed
included final action on regulations for the Associate of Science in Engineering
program, allowing Fortis College to operate as an in-state degree-granting
institution, a report on programs reviewed from February 21, 2009 to July 31,
2009 and a report on private career schools’ actions from May 1-August 21, 2009.
September 9, 2009: Secretary Lyons held a conference call with Senator Jim
Rosapepe, a member of the Senate Education Health and Environmental Affairs (EHEA)
Committee and former USM Regent.
September 9, 2009: Director of Communications participated in Smart, Green and
Growing communications meeting and announced that he is working on getting as
many Maryland colleges and universities to sign up on Governor O’Malley’s Green
Registry. He also announced that after working with the Maryland Chamber of
Commerce that the Chamber has agreed to join the Green Registry and urge its
members to do so as well.
September 9, 2009: Director of Communications participated in Maryland Greener
Economy/Jobs Deliverables meeting.
September 11, 2009: Secretary Lyons participated in the ADP Network Leadership
meeting in Washington, D.C. The goal of the annual meeting was to give states a
significant opportunity to address key challenges and opportunities associated
with moving the college and career-ready policy agenda forward. Participants had
time to engage with national experts, learn from colleagues in other states, and
meet in state teams to plan next steps in their ongoing efforts to advance the
ADP policy goals.
September 12, 2009: MHEC staff held its biggest event of the year, the 2009
Maryland Distinguished Scholars Day Ceremony. Distinguished Scholars in
academics and the arts were honored and the program featured a series of
musical, dance and acting performances by some of Maryland’s high school
students. Secretary Lyons was the keynote speaker and said the O’Malley-Brown
administration is doing an outstanding job dedicating itself to higher education
even in difficult economic times.
September 13, 2009: Secretary Lyons participated in the inauguration of new The
Johns Hopkins President Dr. Ronald J. Daniels.
September 13, 2009: Secretary Lyons addressed The Minority Access, Inc.,
National Role Models Awards Banquet. The audience consisted of faculty, staff,
and students. Created out of a partnership between Minority Access, Inc. and the
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ and supported by the National
Institutes of Health, the annual Role Models Conference is an opportunity to
focus the national spotlight on institutions and individuals who have excelled
in producing and supporting minority researchers, particularly in the biomedical
sciences and health related fields, and their research efforts.
September 14, 2009: MHEC’s Segmental Advisory Council meeting was held. The
Council is made up of the heads of the University System of Maryland (USM), the
Maryland Independent College and University Association (MICUA), the Maryland
Association of Community Colleges (MACC), Morgan State University, St. Mary’s
College of Maryland and The Maryland Association of Private Colleges and Career
Schools (MAPCCS). An update of Maryland’s request for a $2 million grant from
the Lumina Foundation was the major point of discussion.
September 15, 2009: Secretary Lyons served as moderator of the National
Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO)’s H1N1 Swine
Flu Webcast on planning for pandemics. The Webcast featured experts from
Carnegie Mellon University. NACUBO partnered with the American College and
Health Association (ACHA) and the College and University Professional
Association for Human Resources to produce the Webcast. NACUBO is a membership
organization representing more than 2,500 colleges, universities, and higher
education service providers across the country and around the world. Overall,
334 higher education institutions participated in the Webcast as did 1,600
NACUBO, ACHA and (CUPA-HRA) members participated.
Secretary Lyons said that Governor O’Malley has challenged his cabinet to be the
best prepared state in the nation to deal with the H1N1 Swine Flu pandemic and
presented four slides featuring seven major steps the O’Malley-Brown
administration is doing to combat the pandemic.
September 16, 2009: Secretary Lyons delivered remarks at Baltimore City
Community College’s Convocation 2009. He emphasized the O’Malley-Brown
administration’s outstanding commitment to higher education in Maryland.
September 16, 2009: Secretary Lyons attended Governor’s Workforce Investment
Board meeting September 16, 2009: Director of Communications participated in an
H1N1 Swine Flu conference call with experts from the HHS, CDC and DHS.
September 17, 2009: MHEC’s Finance Policy Committee met. An overview of the
Fiscal Year 2011 Operating Budget was discussed and Capital Budget Process and
Operating and Capital Budget presentations were made by the University System of
Maryland, Morgan State University, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, the Maryland
Independent College and University Association, the Maryland Association of
Community Colleges, Baltimore City Community College and six of the State’s
regional higher education centers.
September 16, 2009: Director of Communications and BRAC Coordinator hosted BRAC
Communications/Coordinators marketing meeting at MHEC. BRAC Executive Director
Asuntha Chiang-Smith conducted the meeting.
September 16, 2009: MHEC Outreach Committee met to discuss status of
publications, a Maryland Public Television program produced by MPT and MHEC
called “You Can Afford College” and a new website produced by MHEC that is meant
to appeal to high school students encouraging them not just to go to college,
but how to make it easier for them to do so, called
September 19, 2009: Secretary Lyons was the keynote speaker at the Cultural
Festival of the Indian community from Karnataka State in India. The event was
held to help promote Kannada language, culture, music, dance and drama.
Secretary Lyons brought greetings on behalf of Governor O’Malley and the
O’Malley-Brown administration. Secretary Lyon spoke about the governor’s three
“S’s” – Security, Sustainability (Smart, Green and Growing), and Skills.
Karnataka, located in southern India, is best known for its software industry
September 21, 2009: Secretary Lyons met with Lt. Governor Brown to discuss
issues related to community colleges and other issues.
September 23, 2009: Director of Finance Policy Presented FY 2011 Community
College Construction Grant Overview to DBM Office of Capital Budget.
September 24, 2009: Secretary Lyons participated in a College Success Task Force
Conference Call with MSDE Superintendent Nancy Grasmick and MHEC and MSDE staff.
September 24, 2009: September 24, 2009: Director of Finance Policy attended
monthly meeting for College Savings Plan.
September 24, 2009: Director of Finance Policy attended FY 2011 Capital Budget
Meeting for Southern Maryland Higher Education Center at DBM Office of Capital
September 24, 2009: Director of Communications represented Secretary Lyons and
MHEC at Grand Opening of College of Southern Maryland’s Center for Trades and
Energy Training in Waldorf, MD.
September 25: Secretary Lyons attended the Convocation celebrating the official
adoption of Loyola University, Maryland as that institution’s new name. Loyola
was formerly Loyola College in Maryland and received MHEC approval this past
year to officially change its name.
September 28, 2009: Secretary Lyons participated in College Success Task Force
at MSDE in Baltimore City. He is chairman of this task force with Dr. Grasmick.
September 28, 2009: Working with Lt. Governor’s press office, Director of
Communications wrote public service announcement which Lt. Governor Brown used
to promote the new Post 9/11 G.I. Bill, the most significant piece of higher
education legislation for veterans since World War II. Director of
Communications also attended taping of PSA at police training academy in
September 29, 2009: Secretary Lyons briefed the Senate Education, Health and
Environmental Affairs (EHEA) Committee on the substantial amount of information
MHEC has provided Maryland’s colleges and universities with constant updates
regarding H1N1 Swine Flu pandemic.
September 29, 2009: MHEC’s full commission met. Items discuss included Chairman
O’Keefe’s report, Secretary Lyons’ report, Student Advisory Council Report,
State of Maryland Supplemental 401(a) Matching Plan and Trust, final action of
regulations for the Associate of Science in Engineering program (the first of
its kind in the country), renaming Medix School South to Fortis College and
granting Fortis College degree-granting authority. Information reports were
distributed to the commission including programs reviewed from February 21,
2009-July 31, 2009 and approval action on Private Career School from May 1,
2009-August 21, 2009.
September 29, 2009: MHEC staff coordinated a launch and technical meeting of the
Associate of Science in Engineering (ASE) program with 70 officials from
colleges and universities throughout the State. This first-in-the-nation
initiative spearheaded by MHEC allows Maryland community colleges and Washington
Adventist University to apply to MHEC to offer an ASE in Computer (CE) or
Electrical Engineering. If an ASE graduate is accepted into a four-year program,
a block of credit will transfer (about half the Bachelor of Science Degree).
Capitol College, Frostburg State, Johns Hopkins, Loyola University Maryland,
Morgan State University, the University of Maryland Baltimore County and
University of Maryland Eastern Shore have agreed to accept the ASE transfer of
September 30, 2009: Secretary Lyons and Director of Communications attended
Governor O’Malley’s official unveiling of his Green Registry program. Director
of Communications was responsible for getting numerous public and independent
two- and four-year colleges and universities as well as the Southern Maryland
Electric Cooperative (SMECO), Pepco, Dominion Energy and the Maryland Chamber of
Commerce to sign up on the Registry and is continuing this work.
September 30, 2009: Secretary Lyons and members of MHEC staff met onsite to
preview MDgo4it.org website, a new (social) media way to reach out to middle and
high school students to attract them to college as opposed to MHEC’s official
State website which is geared more towards adults and college and university
presidents, staff and students as well as other governmental representatives.
Private Career Schools and Workforce Development
• Associate Director for Workforce Development and Private Career School
Education Analyst, met with one school (9/10 – Aaron’s Academy of Beauty) to
discuss the procedures for a change of ownership or the establishment of a new
• Held Private Career School Secretary’s Advisory Council meeting by e-mail to
review new school applications. This meant that less cars were on the road
(Smart, Green and Growing) and staff time was better and more efficiently
utilized since these meetings have in the past been held at MHEC.
• All staff attended Academic Affairs annual half day retreat.
• Associate Director of Career Education appeared on WBAL TV news segment to
provide consumer information.
• Private Career School submitted annual reports.
• Three school approvals renewed.
• Two changes of location approved.
• Four new programs approved.
• Thirteen school compliance site visits for Veterans’ Affairs conducted.
• Two State school compliance visits conducted for new schools.
• One meeting with school owners.
Community College Continuing Education
• Associate Director for Workforce Development, along with data entry by
Administrative Assistant processed 221 continuing education course applications
for FTE funding.
• Associate Director for Workforce Development completed/distributed the fiscal
end-of-year FTE funding review for continuing education courses for all 16 MD
community colleges (CC-2/CC-3).
• Associate Director for Workforce Development, with support by MHEC IT staff,
is close to completing the development of a paperless process for continuing
education course applications for FTE funding to be available online.
Ultimately, this online process will allow the MHEC inventory of continuing
education courses to be publicly viewable online. Testing will occur throughout
FY2010, with the anticipated date for going paperless as March 1, 2010.
o Associated with this process, the Community College Continuing Education
Manual has been vetted by all parties concerned and is 99% complete. Associate
Director for Workforce Development attended two meetings regarding the
completion of the online manual and FTE funding process (9/2 and 9/29)
Workforce Development / WIA
• Associate Director for Workforce Development, participated in two Raising The
Bar marketing committee meetings (9/9, 9/30)
• Associate Director for Workforce Development met with a Kaplan Education
representative (TESST Colleges in Maryland) regarding WIA approved programs
• Associate Director for Workforce Development participated in a meeting with
MSDE regarding community college CTE-approved programs/courses.
• Associate Director for Workforce Development attended two workforce related
GWIB Board Meeting (9/16)
o GWIB Interagency Workgroup Committee (9/29)
Records from Closed Institutions of Postsecondary Education
• Administrative Assistant, under Associate Director for Workforce Development’s
signature, responded to 34 requests for transcripts from closed schools and five
education verification requests.
Records from Closed Institutions of Postsecondary Education:
• Private Career School Administrative Support assistant responded to 34
requests for transcripts from closed schools and 5 education verification
Academic Common Market
Private Career School Administrative Support assistant advised 21 callers about
the application process for the Academic Common Market.
BRAC Coordinator Report
Sept. 10 - BRAC Coordinator met with Annabelle Sher of DBED, and business
leaders in the APG area to review plans for the internship website.
Sept 10 - At the American Diploma Project dinner meeting in D.C., Secretary
Lyons spoke about not only preparing students for college, but also preparing
them for science-based careers in high security BRAC jobs.
Sept. 12 - Secretary of Lyons addressed the Distinguished Maryland Scholars, and
informed them of the workforce needs to fill BRAC jobs.
Sept. 15 - BRAC Coordinator met with Annabelle Sher of DBED, and civilian
contractors at APG to review plans for the internship website.
Sept. 16 - BRAC Coordinator and Communications Director Christopher Falkenhagen
hosted a meeting of BRAC Coordinators and Communications Directors at MHEC.
Sept. 19 - At the Kaveri Indian cultural event, Secretary Lyons told all of the
award recipients to be aware of their actions which might preclude them getting
a security clearance and obtaining a BRAC-related job.
Sept. 21 - BRAC Coordinator attended a meeting of the Governor’s Cyber Security
Sept. 23 - Secretary Lyons and BRAC Coordinator attended the BRAC Subcabinet
meeting at Winchester Hall in Frederick.
Sept 23 - At “Capital for a Day” in Frederick, Secretary of Higher Education
James Lyons discussed the BRAC grant program with staff and Frederick Community
College and Hood College.
Director of Communications reported that he regularly uses Twitter to promote
BRAC website, MHEC’s BRAC website and the fact that the O’Malley-Brown
administration is doing a great job preparing the State for BRAC.
Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA)
1. OSFA held its annual Distinguished Scholars Recognition program at University
of Maryland Baltimore County on September 12th. Approximately 600 high school
seniors that received the awards as finalist or semifinalist in academic
achievement and/or talent in the arts were in attendance. In addition to guest
speakers, exhibits and performances were provided by talent in the arts
recipients. During the program OSFA, with assistance from institutional aid
personnel, conducted several financial aid workshops and representatives from 30
Maryland Higher Education institutions held a “College Fair” to assist seniors
with planning their post secondary education.
2. OSFA completed awarding recipients in the Workforce Shortage Student
Assistance Grant program. Approximately 2160 new and returning students were
awarded grants totaling $3.2 million that will enabled these students to
continue their education and work in public service in Maryland after
graduating. Approximately 800 students were placed on a waitlist due to
OSFA staff participated in 2 financial aid outreach activities during September
at area high schools.
Office of Grants
• September 10, 2009 - Attended statewide GEAR UP meeting.
• September 15, 2009 - Attended joint Maryland Board of Nursing and the Maryland
Hospital Association meeting concerning statistics on nursing.
• September 23, 2009 - Received 17 Title IIA Improving Teacher Quality grant
applications and began the grant review process.
• September 25, 2009 - Conducted a Reviewer Orientation meeting for the Title
IIA Improving Teacher Quality grant program review panel.
• September 1-30, 2009 - Offered GEAR UP scholarship to 200 students. This is
the fourth year of the GEAR UP scholarship program.
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 337,000 college students in Maryland, for the State
and its needs, and for business and industry in Maryland.