The global campus, which used to be known as the University of Maryland University College, serves tens of thousands of students and is one of the nation’s biggest players in distance learning. The institution focuses on educating adult students and veterans.
The new structure is necessary, Smith said, to prepare for the rest of the 21st century, as employer and adult-learner needs evolve, and to prepare for challenges to come, before it’s too late.
“Most colleges wait until they’re really in the soup,” Smith added. “We’re not even close to the soup.”
But some faculty members said that they and their colleagues had been stunned by what they considered an unwelcome and jarring announcement. It was devastating for some people who no longer felt secure in their employment, said three faculty members who spoke to The Chronicle on the condition of anonymity, because they did not want to harm their job prospects or their reputations.