Robert Deluty Announces Retirement

A message from Janet C. Rutledge, Scott Casper, and Chris Murphy:

Dear Members of the UMBC Community,

Dr. Robert H. Deluty has announced his intention to retire from UMBC at the end of December, 2016. We invite you to celebrate his 36 years of outstanding service and deep commitment to the UMBC community at a reception on Monday, December 12, from 2:00-5:00 pm in the open area of the 7th floor of the AOK Library. Please let us know if you will attend, or would like to contribute towards a gift, by sending an email to Ms. Shirl Curtis, sfcurtis@umbc.edu.

Dr. Deluty has been a psychology professor at UMBC since 1980, and the Associate Dean of the Graduate School since 2008. For 18 years, he served as the director of the clinical psychology doctoral program, and he was named Presidential Teaching Professor in 2002. Dr. Deluty received a Board of Regents’ Faculty Award for Excellence in Mentoring (2001), the UMBC Alumni Association Award for Faculty Advising and Mentoring (2001), and the Maryland Psychological Association of Graduate Students’ Mentoring Award (2009).

Dr. Deluty’s early research focused on measuring and understanding submissive, aggressive, and assertive behavior in young children. He also conducted important scholarship on assaults by psychiatric patients and staff safety in psychiatric hospitals. Throughout his career, Dr. Deluty’s teaching and research have been informed by a high degree of sensitivity to the ethical and moral dimensions inherent to the discipline. In this spirit, he conducted highly nuanced, and very important, scholarship on the moral dimensions of psychologists’ and laypersons’ responses to suicide. His research has been published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, the Journal of Behavioral Assessment, Omega: The Journal of Death and Dying, the British Journal of Psychiatry, the Journal of Homosexuality, Cognitive Therapy and Research, and many other psychology and interdisciplinary journals.

Dr. Deluty has chaired, co-chaired, or served as a member of 83 Ph.D. dissertation committees and 59 M.A. thesis committees. He is a charter member of the Phi Kappa Phi chapter of UMB-UMBC. In addition to being a charter member of the Eta of Maryland chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, he served as the chapter’s President and Vice President. He was also a founding member of the Behavioral Risk Assessment and Consultation Team and served on the team for eight years.

Dr. Deluty has also distinguished himself as an eloquent observer of the human condition. His poems and essays have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Baltimore Sun, Modern Haiku, The Pegasus Review, Voices: The Art and Science of Psychotherapy, Muse of Fire, and many other newspapers, periodicals, and anthologies. His 51st book, “Saved by Imagination and Humor,” was published in July 2016.

Dr. Deluty has been tremendously supportive and encouraging to all members of our campus community. He has always been available to lend an empathic ear, and to provide guidance and support on scholarship, teaching, and work-life balance. Dr. Deluty has freely shared his wisdom, intelligence, and humor, often in the form of a senryu, to demonstrate to those around him the depth and breadth of living one’s life fully. He has always been mindful of the stress that undergraduate and graduate students experience, and has provided both formal and informal support for their efforts to achieve both academic excellence and life balance.

Respectful dialogue

A message from President Freeman Hrabowski, Provost Philip Rous, and UMBC Shared Governance Leaders:

Dear UMBC Community,

UMBC is committed to welcoming, engaging, and inspiring inquisitive minds from all backgrounds, and it is our collective responsibility to support and respect each other.

Unfortunately, from across the state and throughout the nation this past week, the news media has reported acts of intolerance and hate crimes. We are encouraged that our students, faculty, and staff have been engaged in productive community events and discussions, listening to different perspectives on the future of our country. UMBC is a model for inclusion — not because all members of our diverse community agree with one another, but because we engage with difficult issues and are respectful in our disagreements.

However, we know no campus, including ours, is immune to acts of intolerance. All of us have the responsibility to protect and support each other. We encourage anyone who witnesses or is the victim of a hate/bias incident, harassment, or a hate crime to report the matter to the UMBC Police Department, Office of Student Life, Office of Human Resources, or Office of Human Relations.

UMBC is and will remain a place that values inclusion, diversity, and respect for all members of our community.

Budget Update

A message from Freeman Hrabowski and Philip Rous:

Dear UMBC Faculty and Staff,

We are writing to inform you of the need to manage a shortfall in budgeted revenues for the current fiscal year. The $3.3-million shortfall arises from a lower-than-projected enrollment, resulting in a $2-million gap in budgeted tuition revenue, and a mid-year USM budget cut enacted by the Governor and the Board of Public Works that reduces UMBC’s base budget by $1.3 million.

Our total student enrollment is 1.4% less than projected when building the current FY 2017 budget. In-state student enrollment is down by 0.4%; out-of-state student enrollment is down by 9.8%. Because the per student tuition revenue from out-of-state students is significantly higher than for Maryland residents, the impact of the enrollment decline on budgeted revenues is exacerbated.

In response to the current budget challenge we will continue to follow the guiding principles established by our campus community: to protect our academic programs and our people. There will be no layoffs as a result of this budget shortfall.

The Council of Vice Presidents and Deans has developed a series of actions to close the budget gap. Half of the tuition shortfall will be covered by a $1-million enrollment reserve fund created with FY 2016 utility savings. The remaining $2.3 million reduction will be distributed across the colleges and divisions, with each managing a 1.5% reduction using one-time funding sources such as prior-year carry forward balances, reserves, revolving funds, and salary savings from vacant positions.

Finally, the hiring freeze/exception process in place from 2006 to 2015 will be reinstated effective Monday, November 28. This process addresses staff positions only. A committee comprised of the Provost, the Vice President for Finance and Administration, and the Associate Vice President for Human Resources will review exception requests for critical positions. Details about this process will be shared shortly.

We are confident that UMBC will move through this challenge as we have others, with a steady focus on the quality of the academic experience and the well-being of our community. We deeply appreciate all that each of you contributes to this special place.

Thank You for a Successful Middle States Site Visit

A message from President Freeman Hrabowski, Provost Philip Rous, and Middle States Self-Study Steering Committee Co-chair Bob Carpenter:

Dear members of the UMBC community,

We would to thank the entire campus community for making the Middle States Accreditation Site Visit so successful. We appreciate the hard work and dedication of those who organized the visit and were involved in all three parts of the accreditation process – the development of the Self-Study, the creation of the document road map, and the federal compliance exercise. We’d also like to thank all of those who met with the Middle States Peer Review Team for their thoughtful engagement with the team members.

At the exit meeting today, we received a very positive oral report from the Peer Review Team Chair, Dr. Mary Ann Swain. The final accreditation decision will be made by the Middle States Commission, based on the recommendation of the site visitors, our document reviewers, and our federal compliance review. We expect to receive the final decision sometime in 2017.

We recognize that this Self-Study process reflects our collective vision and the thoughtful planning, shared efforts, and commitment of the entire campus community over the past decade. As the Review Team Chair said, our shared governance process is a major strength of UMBC.

We are proud to work with all of you.

UMBC Colleague and Friend Debbie Cherry Passes Away

We were recently informed of the passing of one of UMBC’s dedicated colleagues, Debbie Cherry, on Sunday, October 24.

Deb, as she was fondly referred to by friends and colleagues, began her employment with UMBC’s Facilities Management (formerly Physical Plant) in 1971 and forged lasting relationships with workers and students across campus. She later transferred to the Africana Studies department and served faculty, staff, and students until her retirement in 2005.

Debbie was never too far from her UMBC community.  She consistently returned to UMBC on a part-time basis to assist various departments as the need arose, and maintained strong friendships in the UMBC community.

Deb also created a legacy of service at UMBC. Her daughter, Jessica Hutchins, has worked at UMBC since 2003 and currently works in the Human Resources department.

We know Debbie will be missed greatly by her family and the UMBC community.