Here’s a recap of what’s in the news in and around the UMBC campus, originally brought to you by UMBC News.

This news recap is brought to you by UMBC’s Division of Professional Studies, offering a broad array of professionally-focused master’s degrees and certificate programs that address industry needs while anticipating future opportunities.


UMBC Student Earns Newman Civic Fellow Status

Rising Senior Nihira Mugamba, an Political Science and Africana Studies double major, was named a Newman Civic Scholar for 2020 and becomes the 6th ever UMBC student to earn this public service award. Her work of promoting literacy in both the United States and Uganda is what earned her this prestigious fellowship. She earned her Girl Scout Gold award in high school for creating a reading class for kindergarten students in Uganda, where her family is from. While at UMBC, Mugamba interned with the Parliament of Uganda, where she worked alongside the education department and was able to continue working with her reading program she had created all those years ago. She also was a Shriver Center Literacy fellow, where she helped kids improve their reading and writing skills at Bay-brook Elementary/Middle School in Baltimore.


Reduced Tuition for the Fall 2020 Semester

As most UMBC students will be taking online classes remotely, the cost of attendance for the fall has been adjusted accordingly. Compared to last fall, the tuition will decrease by 22% for in-state students. Undergraduate students will have reduced mandatory feels by $1,304 and will only have to pay the technology fee and 50% of the University Commons fee. Graduate students will have reduced mandatory fees by $101 and will only have to pay 50% of the University Commons and graduate program fees. Need-based aid can also be granted by the Stay-Black-and-Gold fund and and The Fund for UMBC, all from contributions from alumni, faculty, staff, and friends of the university. These funds allow $150,000 worth of emergency, need based aid for students who are in need. Students interested in this should contact their financial aid advisor from the Financial Aid website


UMBC Student Competes in National Mock Trial Competition’s Final Round

Sydney Gaskins, a junior Political Science major, finished as the runner up in this year’s national Trial By Combat (TBC), a national mock trial competition hosted by the UCLA School of Law and the Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law. Gaskins competed against 15 graduating seniors from many prestigious universities around the country, including Yale, Stanford, and Harvard. She was the youngest in the competition as the only junior, and she was also among the first underrepresented women to compete in the championship’s history. Alongside this, she was given the Award for Best Cross-Examination. This wasn’t Gaskins’ first rodeo in this competition; she was given All-American honors at the 2019 competition.


UMBC Students Win COVID-19 App Challenge

Two student teams from UMBC participated in the University System of Maryland’s competition to create an app to help Maryland residents respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, and both of them came out successful. The first team of Kirubel Tolosa M.S. ‘23, information systems; Pradeep Margasahayam Prakash M.S. ‘21, information systems; and Raghav Deivachilai M.S. ‘23, computer science, created an app called Follow-up. This app allows healthcare workers to moderate and monitor patients who are isolating at home. Through constant symptom updates, these healthcare professionals can easily follow up with their patients. The second team of Emily Sullivan ‘21, computer science, and Dominic Crofoot ‘19, computer science created an app called Snuggrub. This app focuses on local food; it gives a way for customers to monitor the status of their favorite restaurants’ COVID-19 health regulations, to see if they can order for pick-up, dine outside, etcetera. This allows a large group of people to find the answers they need without the restaurant having to answer the same questions over and over again. 

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