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Graduate School-TLTC Collaboration on Research, Teaching, and Learning Receives $130,000 for Expansion

October 17, 2014

Contact: Niambi Wilder Winter, (301) 405-0763,

UM-CIRTL at the University of Maryland Receives $130,000 for Expansion
Great Lakes grant supports efforts to improve STEM graduation rates nationwide

College Park, MD—Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields increasingly drive our nation’s innovation and competitiveness, and more STEM-educated professionals are needed to fill in- demand, well-paying jobs. Yet fewer than 40 percent of students who enter college intending to major in a STEM field complete a STEM degree—if they graduate at all.

To help reduce troubling attrition rates in STEM disciplines, particularly among disadvantaged students, the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL) is preparing the nation’s future STEM faculty to be both great researchers and great teachers. The University of Maryland is part of a network of 22 major research universities across 16 states in which STEM graduate students are learning teaching and mentoring techniques proven to help undergraduate students from all backgrounds stay with their STEM majors and complete their degrees. CIRTL Network universities currently graduate about 20 percent of the country’s new STEM faculty each year.

As part of the CIRTL Network, the University of Maryland will receive funding from Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation. Great Lakes has committed a total $3.2 million to CIRTL, from fall 2014 through spring 2017. Combined with a separate grant CIRTL received from the National Science Foundation (NSF), this Great Lakes grant provides the resources necessary to expand programming at each university, and support cross-network sharing of best practices in future faculty development.

The University of Maryland’s local CIRTL learning community, UM-CIRTL, is a collaboration between the Graduate School and the Teaching and Learning Transformation Center (TLTC). UM-CIRTL will expand existing programming for graduate students and post-doctoral fellows and develop a series of online modules around teaching and learning to support the development of future higher education instructors according to the CIRTL pillars. By the second year, UM-CIRTL plans to have 100 CIRTL Associates and 20 CIRTL Practitioners.

“With Great Lakes funding, UM-CIRTL can significantly expand the reach of our teaching and learning programming for future faculty, with stronger, larger programs and more learning communities to meet the needs of our graduate students and postdocs,” said Dr. Stephen M. Roth, TLTC’s Director of Outreach and Instructional Innovation.

“Together with the CIRTL Network and NSF, we are rising to the national challenge to help more students stay enrolled in their programs, graduate with STEM degrees, and transition to rewarding careers,” said Richard D. George, President and Chief Executive Officer of Great Lakes. “We expect to truly shape the future of STEM education for thousands of future faculty, and an entire generation of undergraduate students.”

About the University of Maryland
The University of Maryland is the state's flagship university and one of the nation's preeminent public research universities. A global leader in research, entrepreneurship and innovation, the university is home to more than 37,000 students, 9,000 faculty and staff, and 250 academic programs. Its faculty includes three Nobel laureates, two Pulitzer Prize winners, 49 members of the national academies and scores of Fulbright scholars. The institution has a $1.8 billion operating budget, secures $500 million annually in external research funding and recently completed a $1 billion fundraising campaign. For more information about the University of Maryland, visit

About Great Lakes: Dedicated to making college education a reality since 1967.
Knowing that education has the power to change lives for the better, Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates was established as a nonprofit group focused on a single objective: helping students nationwide prepare for and succeed in postsecondary education and student loan repayment. As a leading student loan guarantor and servicer, we have been selected by the U.S. Department of Education to provide assistance and repayment planning to nearly 9 million borrowers – as well as assistance to colleges and lenders nationwide. Our group’s earnings support one of the largest and most respected educational philanthropy programs in the country. Since 2006, we have committed nearly $127 million in grant funding to promote higher education access and completion for students of color, low-income students, and first-generation students. For additional information, visit

Contact Information

The Graduate School
University of Maryland

2123 Lee Building
7809 Regents Drive
College Park, MD 20742