From Antarctica to the Chesapeake

In the Chesapeake Bay Quarterly, published by the Maryland Sea Grant program a recent article discusses seal level rise due to the melting of ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica.

Antarctica is, in many ways, the king of the cryosphere. Greenland is melting at a faster rate, but the southern continent holds a lot more ice, says Christopher Shuman, a geoscientist at the Joint Center for Earth Systems Technology, a collaboration between the University of Maryland Baltimore County and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. In total, there’s enough ice on Antarctica to raise the world’s oceans by more than 200 feet.

“That’s what makes it the 800-pound gorilla compared to the more rapidly changing parts of the cryosphere,” Shuman says.


Shuman is no stranger to the Mid Atlantic.

The geoscientist grew up in the Philadelphia area and spent family vacations in his grandparents’ cabin on the Elk River near Cecilton, Maryland. Today, some of his cousins own the house. Like so many other property owners in Maryland, they’ve seen the handiwork of rising waters. These days, when a big storm hits the Chesapeake, waves often wash over the family’s dock.

“It’s a special place to us,” Shuman says. “It’s also a pretty good vantage point for appreciating the world that’s evolving around us.”

In recent years, scientists have learned more about the role that Antarctica will play in this evolving world. Their research points to big losses in the years to come.


Read the entire story

Green Office Training Luncheon (11/11)

Lunch will be provided. Space is limited to the first 50 people who RSVP on myUMBC.

Location: University Center, Ballroom Lounge.
Tuesday, Nov. 11, Noon to 1pm

Join Green Offices for lunch, meet active and engaged members of the community, and to learn how to update your offices and colleagues with green practices- to reap the benefits in efficiency and resource conservation every day!

Our actions- setting up recycling bins, helpful labels and energy saving settings- all add up across campus and over time, setting a proud example of UMBC’s commitment to sustainability. Together, Green Offices and the other efforts of the work groups are part of the solutions generated to our campus climate commitment.

Learn how to update your office with new recycling bins, update the labeling and signage for existing ones, review energy conservation guidelines and help post reminders and prompts. You’ll also learn how to inform your officemates about sustainable practices, and to invite them to select green commitments. Acting today will pay off every day!

At the Green Office Training Luncheon, the 3 steps to certification will be reviewed:

• Training and approval
• Checklist (energy, waste, and transportation)
• Implementation (with available assistance from Eco-Ambassadors)

With the help of the toolkit and eco-ambassadors (who can visit your office to help facilitate, deliver and implement the green office program) transforming your office is a snap!

Just bring your questions, ideas, and an appetite!

Shinogle Award Lecture and Reception (11/14)

6:00-7:30 pm
Public Policy Room 206

Join UMBC faculty, students, staff and guests for a presentation by 2014 Judith A. Shinogle Memorial Award recipient Alison Mitchell. There will be a reception following the lecture.

Ms. Mitchell is a Public Policy Ph.D. candidate in the health policy concentration. She received her B.A. from Boston University, and an M.P.P. from George Washington University. An analyst in health care financing for the Congressional Research Service (CRS), she assists members of Congress and their staff with policy and legislative issues related to Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The family of Judith Shinogle established the Memorial Award in her memory to provide support for doctoral students committed to health policy research. Dr. Shinogle had a distinguished and productive career as a health policy analyst and researcher. At the time of her death, she was a senior research scientist with the UMBC Maryland Institute for Policy Analysis and Research, and an adjunct faculty member of the Department of Public Policy.

Please RSVP to Pam Mollen by November 10 at

Clifford Murphy, American Studies, in the Washington Post

In a recent article published in The Conversation and The Washington Post, American Studies Lecturer Clifford Murphy wrote about his research documenting New England’s country music history and traditions in order to understand how the region once home to a robust country music culture merely sixty years ago now has a much different country music scene.

Yankee Twang

“In short, the arrival of television compromised the profit margins of radio, replacing live musicians with disc jockeys. Meanwhile, the country music industry consolidated in Nashville, where country format radio was born,” Murphy wrote. He discussed the culture shift away from “the people” to more centralized commercial broadcasts and how the concept has extended into other spheres of regional American life.

Murphy, who is Program Director of Folk & Traditional Arts at the Maryland State Arts Council, turned his research into a new book titled Yankee Twang, which was published this month by University of Illinois Press. For more information, click here. To read Murphy’s full article titled “Country pop is having a moment in the Northeast. But its soaring popularity is threatening to kill regional music,” click here.

George Derek Musgrove, History, in the New York Times

On October 30, the New York Times published an article about the Washington, D.C. mayoral election and how changing demographics in the District could affect the race. The article notes that a surge of roughly 80,000 new voters in the District in recent years could make the election outcome less certain than many expect.

Derek Musgrove

George Derek Musgrove ’97, history, associate professor of history, was interviewed for the article. The excerpt from the story can be found below:

“This race has a fascinating set of circumstances,” said George Derek Musgrove, a historian at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, who is writing a book on race and democracy in the District of Columbia.

Chief among them, Professor Musgrove said, is the shrinking black population in this city of about 650,000 people. It declined 11 percent from 2001 to 2011, while the white population increased by 31 percent, and the Asian population increased, too.

“No one knows how many new residents will vote, or in what numbers,” Professor Musgrove said.

Further, he said, residents, particularly the poor, have looked at the record of the past three administrations on the key issues of education and affordable housing and seen little progress. “Folks don’t quite know if Muriel Bowser can deal with those two problems, so there is a critical mass of people who are willing to try something new.”

To read the complete article, click here.

Thomas Schaller, Political Science, Op-Ed in the Baltimore Sun

Tom SchallerIn his latest column in the Baltimore Sun, Political Science Professor and Chair Thomas Schaller wrote about his analysis of Maryland’s gubernatorial election. With the race much closer than many expected, Schaller wrote about five lessons voters can take away from the election.

Schaller discussed how it’s difficult to run as a lieutenant governor, how race could affect the election, how political party favors have been a factor, voter turnout, and Republican candidate Larry Hogan’s campaign strategy.

To read the full column titled “Race, party favors and early voting key in Md. governor’s battle,” click here.

Schaller is participating in a post election forum at UMBC on Thursday, November 13 along with Public Policy Professor and Chair Donald Norris and Washington Post Political Reporter John Wagner. For more information, click here.