A statue of Jim Henson and Kermit the frog seated on a red granite bench commands the space just left of the entrance to the Adele H. Stamp Student Union at the University of Maryland, College Park, Henson’s alma mater.
• Henson, who graduated from College Park in 1960 was known throughout the world for his creation of the Muppets and his work in television with Sesame Street and The Muppet Show.
• UMD dedicated the statue on September 24th, 2003, which would have been his 67th birthday
• Together the sculpture and bench create the Jim Henson memorial, a parting gift of the class of 1998, with the immediate surrounding area known as the Henson Memorial Garden, a gift from UMD Classes of 1994 and 1998, and designed by landscape architect Phillip Cho.
• Karen Falk, a noted Henson archivist, said that the notion of an on-campus memorial for Henson was formed from the special event The Muppets Take Maryland, which took place at the university in 1997. The members of the class of ’98 wanted to honor and remember Henson with a gift for the tremendous impact he had on children’s lives.
• That ideal still stands to today as Henson’s creative and imaginative spark and soul still live through each succeeding class of the University of Maryland as we all learn to accept one another for our strength of character and compassion and not judge based on superficial features.
Democracy Then and Now: Vote!
I’m Taniyia Harvey and I focused my assignment on the Wye House and Frederick Douglass exhibit in the Hornbake Library. The Wye House exhibit was put together by the University of Maryland professors Mark Leone and Stephen Woehlke. The exhibit focuses on the Wye House in Talbot County Maryland and its rich history on slaves and their culture. The Wye House exhibit stems from the Archaeology in Annapolis Project that Mark Leone has been the director of since its start in 1981. The Wye House was owned by the Lloyds and their descendants the Tilghmans sponsored this archaeological scholarship on their property. In Frederick Douglass’s writings he referred to the gardeners and his time in slavery spent at the Wye House plantation. In contrast, the researchers involved learned about the cultural aspects of the Wye House including the tools, cuisine, religion, and agriculture that the slaves produced. The purpose of the Wye House exhibition is to provide more information about the culture of Maryland slaves and their everyday lives.
Democracy Then and Now: Vote!
During the Vietnam War era, the state of Maryland was a host to a significant number of anti-war activities. On May 1, 1970, just one day after President Nixon’s announcement of the U.S. invasion of Cambodia, over one thousand anti-war protestors occupied Route One, ransacked the ROTC armory on campus, and engaged both state and local police in, often violent, confrontations. However, this was only the beginning; just three days later, a rally was held on the mall. Within an hour, students occupied both the Administration Building and Route One. This thirteen hour long ordeal not only marked the beginning of a three-week series of violent protests, but also sought out the attention of the National Guard. Five-hundred National Guard, three hundred-fifty state police, seventy PG County Police, and two-hundred Baltimore City police were mobilized in order to subdue over four-thousand students. I believe this radicalization helped spark a call for the rights of college students and helped construct several aspects of the University of Maryland’s current mission and goals statement. Whether it be attempting to nurture and encourage innovation by providing collaborations with State, federal, private, and non-profit partners or to create and apply knowledge that nourishes a climate of intellectual growth the University of Maryland focuses on providing students with an optimal environment for success. Thanks to the efforts of the students on the famous McKeldin Mall, we have made large steps to get to where we are today.
Cole Field House, the old home of the university of Maryland Basketball team, was built in 1955 as the student activities building, and renamed one year later after congressman and former board of Regents chairman William P Cole Jr. The 12,000 seat arena was renowned for its one of a kind design while being only second in size to Madison Square Garden for similar indoor facilities on the East Coast. The addition of nearly 3000 seats near the court in the 1960s would bring the atmosphere in Cole to a new ceiling, cementing its reputation as a loud and intimidating arena for opposing teams to visit. In 1966, Texas Western started the first all-black lineup in college basketball at Cole Field House in a historic game to defeat the Kentucky Wildcats all-white starting lineup for the national championship. The first ever sporting event between the United States and China was a ping-pong match, held at Cole in 1972, leading to a tradition of sports as a vital piece of international relations. Women’s basketball saw its first national airtime from Cole as Maryland’s Women’s basketball team played the defending champion Immaculata. After retiring as an active field house in 2002, Cole would continue to be used for recreation and sporting events until 2015 with the Maryland High School Wrestling State Championships being the final event on the floor of Cole. Democracy then and now: vote!
The university of Maryland college park was established in 1856 within the same time period of the emancipation of slaves. Historically the campus is intertwined within the push for equal rights among African Americans and whites. University of Maryland, 1335 acres, is located in an affluent minority based county but just recently had one of a few honorary black symbols built on the campus in 2015. Students have campaigned for the Frederick Douglas statue that advocates for the liberty and equality of all regardless of race, sex, and religion. The Frederick Douglas statue, 0.00017 acres, was built and revealed in 2015, during a time in history now, where the quality of African American life is undermined as it has since slavery. Students have taken many steps to diversify the campus with the cultural identity its’ students identify with. Many classify the campus as diverse however, the student body is more than half white. As a community University of Maryland students have 1334.99983 acres left to cover.
Democracy Then and Now. Vote!
Ethan Hutt, Assistant Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership, University of Maryland
The Morrill Act of 1862 represented a young nation’s first major foray to expand access to higher education; now, 150 years later, access to higher education remains a major responsibility of public universities. This lecture will examine past attempts to expand access in order to illuminate present-day challenges.
Hosted by the Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership
Maryland Humanities Podcasts:
“As the upcoming general election approaches, we reflect upon the critical importance of political participation. “Democracy Then and Now: Citizenship and Public Education,” a Maryland Humanities-supported initiative at the University of Maryland, asks students, faculty, staff, and all Marylanders to consider how public higher education has contributed to the inclusion and exclusion of certain people in full citizenship, including voting rights. Kimberly Coles, associate professor of English at University of Maryland, tells us about a recent court case that sheds light on the role of public education in civic participation.”
Listen to this Podcast (and more!) at http://www.mdhumanities.org/podcasts/