University of Maryland, College Park President Wallace Loh and University of Maryland, Baltimore President Jay Perman announced the intention to create the Maryland Academy for Innovation in National Security that would support an FBI headquarters in Greenbelt, Maryland.
Joined by University System Chancellor Robert Caret and House Speaker Michael E. Busch, national security experts, higher education officials, and local elected leaders, Presidents Perman and Loh put forth a vision for a strategic national security partnership that will harmonize UMB and UMCP’s relevant capabilities in terrorism and counterterrorism studies, intelligence analysis, cybersecurity and high performance computing, criminology and criminal justice, homeland security law, and crisis management. The Maryland Academy would be located on the University of Maryland’s College Park campus, and build on existing programs at UMCP and UMB, such as the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), the Maryland Cybersecurity Center (MC2), the Center for the Advanced Study of Language (CASL), and the Schools of Law, Medicine and Business.
“This national security partnership to establish the Maryland Academy for Innovation in National Security would provide the world’s preeminent law enforcement organization with a continuous pipeline of pioneering research and access to a world-class regional workforce,” said President Wallace Loh. “This is an exciting joint initiative that leverages our collective research and talent in an effort to help foster continuous innovation at the FBI.”
"UMB is excited to bring its assets to this Academy: our Carey School of Law, with its deep expertise and programs in crisis management, cybersecurity, and counterterrorism; the University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security, a leader in all aspects of national security and emergency response; and our essential biomedical capabilities, including unrivaled experience in forensic genomic analysis and viral detection, prevention, and treatment,” stated President Jay Perman. “Partnering with our colleagues in College Park, we can establish an innovation hub that advances the FBI’s mission and protects this country’s national security interests."
“The Maryland Academy will further strengthen the strategic partnership between Maryland’s largest public research universities and offer the FBI unparalleled access to innovative research, subject matter expertise, and a pipeline of world-class talent,” stated Chancellor Robert Caret.
Greenbelt Mayor Emmett V. Jordan, who hosted the event with Prince George’s County Councilman Todd M. Turner, stated, “The City of Greenbelt is at the center of it all, and we’re ready to welcome the FBI. Our proximity to College Park, Washington, DC, the Baltimore region – and now the Maryland Academy for Innovation in National Security – makes Greenbelt an ideal choice for the FBI.”
Prior to the press conference, university officials participated in a “Whistle Stop” tour to demonstrate the central, transit-oriented nature of the proposed Greenbelt location for the FBI, including its close proximity to Baltimore, Washington, DC, the National Security Agency and the Department of Justice via Metro, MARC train, I-495 (the Capital Beltway), I-95 and I-295.
President Perman boarded the MARC train in Baltimore at 8:05AM and arrived at Greenbelt Metro station just before 9:00AM to highlight the short commute from Baltimore, while President Loh took Metro’s Green Line one stop from College Park to Greenbelt.
House Speaker Michael Busch, who attended the press conference after a short commute from Anne Arundel County, stated, "The State of Maryland is ready to welcome the FBI to Prince George’s County, MD. We have one of the best trained workforces in the country and I’m confident that the Maryland Academy can help the FBI respond to the challenges presented by global terrorism. The UMCP and UMB strategic partnership will bring together the very best in terrorism and counter terrorism studies to serve our law enforcement agencies."
Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman attended the event noting that, “In addition to attracting some of the nation's leading technical companies that can support the FBI, the residents of Howard County are some of the most highly skilled, tech-savvy professionals in the nation and we are looking forward to supporting the FBI’s mission right here in Maryland.”
Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake released a statement saying, "A new FBI headquarters in Greenbelt will offer access to Baltimore’s talented and diverse workforce, world-class anchor institutions and expanding innovation economy. We are looking forward to working with our regional partners to ensure the FBI benefits from the best that Baltimore has to offer including experienced minority- and women-owned contractors and a wide array of housing opportunities."
September 15, 2016