Expansion as matter of courses Colleges launch satellite campuses

May 01, 1992|By Thomas W. Waldron | Thomas W. Waldron,Staff Writer

Where is the Johns Hopkins University? In North Baltimore, of course. But also in Columbia, Scaggsville, downtown Baltimore, near the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, in Washington, D.C., and in Rockville.

So, where is the College of Notre Dame? Also in North Baltimore, but coming soon to Harford County.

Throughout the state, colleges are expanding beyond their traditional borders. Ivy-covered buildings on sprawling campuses are out; functional space convenient to professional workers is in.

The trend continued yesterday as the University of Maryland System opened its new Downtown Baltimore Center. The center, operating from leased space in Hopkins Plaza, will initially offer courses in engineering, hotel management, paralegal studies and finance.

The center "is for people with tight business schedules and specific educational goals," said Donald N. Langenberg, the university system chancellor.

Other schools have similarly been motivated to open or plan satellite campuses. This fall, for example, the College of Notre Dame intends to launch weekend courses in Bel Air in conjunction with Harford Community College.

The northeast corner of the state has lacked four-year-college courses, and Notre Dame was eager to step in, offering degrees in nursing and business.

But colleges don't expand to lose money. Notre Dame officials expect the Harford campus to be popular.

"If it's not profitable, it will certainly pay for itself," said spokeswoman Ruth Lawson Walsh.

Perhaps the most potential lies in Montgomery County, the state's most populous subdivision, which is loaded with high-tech industry but lacks a major four-year college.

Several schools seek to fill that vacuum. Hopkins already offers several courses, including liberal arts subjects and engineering, at a county-developed campus in the Shady Grove area outside Rockville. And next month, UM will open a 53,000-square-foot building in which several colleges in the system will offer courses.

Meanwhile, colleges in Washington, including American University, Georgetown University and George Washington ,X University, also have begun offering courses in Montgomery County.

"The Washington institutions are not oblivious to the opportunities that exist across the border," said Jeffrey Welsh, a spokesman for the Maryland Higher Education Commission.

This fall, Hopkins will expand even further into the Washingtonarea by offering part-time graduate-level programs at its international studies school near Dupont Circle.

"So many people are constrained against going back to school full time for degrees," said Hopkins spokesman Dennis O'Shea. "Logistically, it's just easier for them to do it on a part-time basis. To make that easy, you have to do it where the students are."

University officials often rely on businesses for ideas about what to offer and where.

UM's Downtown Center grew out of suggestions from the

Baltimore business community, for example. One of the center's offerings, a master's degree in engineering management, was specifically suggested by the Greater Baltimore Committee, according to Elizabeth D. Blake, the center's director.

UM also plans a minicampus concentrating on engineering in St. Mary's County, with an eye toward the military people stationed in Southern Maryland.

Virtually no college is content with one campus. Loyola College, for example, offers courses in Hunt Valley and Columbia.

"Those are as 'satellite' as we want to get," said Mark Kelly, a Loyola spokesman. "You start to diffuse your resources after a while."

The University of Baltimore is considering expansion, perhaps in Hunt Valley, said Katie Ryan, a campus spokeswoman. "It's where we have to go," she said. "Everybody is doing it."

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.