TerrapinSTRONG From the Start

Onboarding Initiative Introduces Terps to UMD’s History, Values

Joining the University of Maryland usually calls for setting up your laptop, scurrying to get your ID card and having an awkward ice-breaking mealwith colleagues or floormates. Now a new program for arriving employees and students expands the idea of what “onboarding” should look like.

TerrapinSTRONG” is a 45-minute online training that covers UMD’s past (including historical discrimination against women and people of color), celebrates its traditions and trailblazers, and outlines what Terps are doing today to advance equity and social justice. It aims to make every member of the UMD community feel that they belong and can succeed here.

University President Darryll J. Pines, who announced this initiative on his first day on the job, says in the introduction: “I have come to understand that our greatest strength as an institution is how we value and support each other. A diverse community of students, faculty and staff who take on grand challenges together—this is what I have come to describe as TerrapinSTRONG.”

The training rolled out to new students, faculty and staff in Fall 2021, and to current faculty and staff this semester. It encourages everyone to create a plan to get involved on campus—whether through student engagement, research, professional development or academic courses—to become TerrapinSTRONG.

Participants are directed to check the online University of Maryland timeline, African American history walking tour, and the latest M Book before taking quizzes in the modules. Can you answer a few of the questions correctly?

Which campus building is named after the first dean of women?
A) Hornbake Library
Tawes Fine Arts Building
McKeldin Library
Stamp Student Union

In 1959, exactly 100 years after the first group of students enrolled in Maryland Agricultural College, Elaine Johnson Coates became the first ____________.
A) Woman to earn a graduate degree from UMD
Woman to earn an undergraduate degree from UMD
Hispanic woman to graduate from UMD
African American woman to graduate from UMD

Which of these are UMD sports traditions? (Choose all that apply)
Unfurling the Maryland flag at football games
Reading The Diamondback when opponents are introduced at basketball games
Student flash mob
The Midnight Mile


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