A message from President Freeman Hrabowski and Provost Philip Rous:
We are writing to express the profound sense of loss our community feels over the recent deaths of a number of our students and colleagues. We mourn the loss of these individuals, and we are holding their families and friends in our thoughts and prayers.
These recent losses have been felt particularly acutely by some departments and campus communities, and we offer our most sincere condolences to those most deeply affected. Now, more than ever, is a time for us all to come together and support one another. UMBC is a special community that places a high value on creating and sustaining a caring environment. If you need additional support, there are a number of university resources available to you (see below).
In addition to requests for support, we have been hearing questions about the university’s response to the passing of our community members. We understand that these questions are coming from a place of concern for the individuals involved and for our broader community. Our number one priority in addressing the death of a member of the university is to honor the wishes of the person’s family. We must respect individuals’ and families’ privacy and are bound by legal and ethical constraints regarding the information we can share.
The university has a standard approach to responding to the loss of a community member. However, given that families’ wishes vary, the university’s apparent response may vary. For example, we generally announce the death of a member of our community, but, in some cases, the family does not wish for the university to do so. We honor those requests. This, understandably, can lead to the perception that we are treating some individuals differently than others — though we actually follow the same guidelines for all. (Further explanation of the university’s approach and answers to frequently asked questions can be found here.)
We also had a recent health emergency in a public space involving one of our faculty members, and many of you have expressed your concern and well wishes. An instructor and a number of our students, many from the Department of Emergency Health Services, were critical in providing life-saving response. We want to thank those students for all that they did.
Every member of our community is of inestimable value, and we are committed to treating each one with the utmost respect. We know you all share that value and will care for one another.
Students who need additional support at this time are encouraged to contact the UMBC Counseling Center at 410-455-2472.
Faculty and staff can request counseling through the Inova Employee Assistance Program by calling 1-800-346-0110.
Additional resources and places for support include: