Brooks Keynotes National Extension Service Conference

  • Sunday, January 28, 2007

    PRINCESS ANNE, MD -   Dr. Carolyn B. Brooks, dean of the School of Agricultural and Natural Sciences at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, challenged 21st century notions of success for land-grant universities during her keynote address to a national conference of Cooperative Extension professionals.  This professional society seeks to foster standards of excellence in the Extension system and to develop the Extension profession and professional.

      

    In her presentation, Dr. Brooks described the original mission of the land-grant university system that was created by federal legislation in the late nineteenth century as providing educational opportunity for the working class in the United States, in contrast to the European model at that time of educating only the male leisure class.  Today however, said Dr. Brooks, in an effort to be ranked by "U.S. News and World Reports" magazine as among the nation's "best" colleges, land-grant institutions are becoming increasingly elitist -- exactly what they were not supposed to be.  The two land-grant institutions in Maryland are the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and the University of Maryland College Park.

     

    Dr. Brooks also discussed the current national concerns with access, accountability, and affordability of higher education as revealed in, among other reports,  that of U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings' Commission on the Future of Higher Education, which have resulted in new recommendations for higher education in the U.S.   

     

    Other conference keynoters included Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., President of the University of Maryland College Park, and Dr. Albert Pierce, Director of the Center for the Study of Professional Military Ethics at the U.S. Naval Academy.  Approximately 300 participants attended the conference, which was hosted by the University of Maryland's Tau chapter.

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    Kat Harting, media specialist, UMES Department of Agriculture, 410-651-6084, kharting@umes.edu.

     

    Contact: Suzanne Waters Street, director, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-621-2355, sstreet@umes.edu.