News 2019: Reasons to be "Proud to be UMassD"

News 2019: Reasons to be "Proud to be UMassD"
Reasons to be "Proud to be UMassD"

Chancellor Johnson's year-end message to UMassD alumni

Commencement procession

Dear UMassD alumni,

As the end of 2018-19 academic year has come to a close and we begin preparing for the next class of Corsairs, I am proud to share with you all that we have accomplished this year at UMass Dartmouth.

We just celebrated the Class of 2019 during our Commencement ceremonies, which were held on campus for the first time in two years, awarding more than 1,400 undergraduate, nearly 400 graduate, and almost 50 law degrees. It was a joy to look out at Cressy Field and the Main Auditorium and witness our students’ pride in their accomplishments thanks to their own hard work, the love of their family and friends, and the support of the entire UMassD community.

This was an exciting year to be a part of the Corsair community, which presented even more reasons for you to be “Proud to be UMassD.” Here are just a few of the many highlights of the year:

  • 98% of 2018 nursing BS graduates passed their national nursing exam (NCLEX) on the first try.
  • Not to be outdone, UMass Law’s first-time bar pass rate ranked third in the region at 92.6%, behind Harvard and Boston University.
  • UMassD is a top 10 producer of physics graduates among departments where the MS is the highest degree offered.
  • Robert Najlis, MFA ’19, was recently announced as a winner of the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship, which he will use to study in China.
  • On the athletic fields, the Corsairs had an outstanding year. Men’s ice hockey went to the MASCAC quarterfinals, men’s and women’s basketball made the LEC playoffs, and George Papoulis ’20 was the national runner-up in the men’s 800m at the NCAA Indoor Championships.

Enrollment and Retention Growth

UMass Dartmouth had a 7.7% increase in enrollment among first-year students in 2018-19. We welcomed more than 200 former Mount Ida students to our community, thanks to the dedicated efforts of our faculty and staff. Applications for students entering in fall 2019 also increased.

Campus Master Plan

The next time you visit campus, you’ll see a transformation taking place as construction is underway on our new $134 million first-year student residential and dining complex, now rising rapidly behind CVPA and scheduled to open in the fall of 2020. We also received $25 million in state funds for an envelope renovation of the Science and Engineering building.

Looking ahead…

During the 2019-20 academic year, we will be focusing on our key strategic priorities, including attracting and retaining undergraduate and graduate students, aligning our budget with those strategic priorities, continuing to address our campus infrastructure and deferred maintenance, and working with our industry and government partners for the betterment of our region. You can read more about our strategic plan here: Future Ready: UMassD 2025.

I want to thank you all for your support of UMassD. I hope to see many of you at Homecoming Weekend, October 25-27!

Best regards,

Robert E. Johnson, Ph.D.