Maryland Takes Steps to Eliminate Duplicative Programs at PWIs and HBCUs

Last summer, Towson University in Maryland proposed adding a doctoral degree program in buiness analytics. Officials at Morgan State University in Baltimore objected saying that the Towson program would attract students that otherwise would enroll at Morgan State.

The Maryland Higher Education Commission originally approved the Towson program but then the state Attorney General stepped in an said there was not a proper quorom for the Commission to approve the measure. Towson then withdrew its request but vowed it would resubmit it at a later date.

Now the state has formed the Maryland Program Approval Process Workgroup with aim of avoiding duplicative programs before they get off the ground. The groups’ recommendations called for the Maryland Higher Education Commission to circulate the notice of an institution’s intent to establish a new program within 30 days of the receipt of the notice. Within 30 days of receipt of a notice of an institution’s intent to establish a new program, the commission may file, or an institution of higher education in the State may file with the commission, an objection to the implementation of the proposed program.

An objection may be based on:
• inconsistency of the proposed program with the institution’s approved mission for a public institution of higher education and the mission statement published in the official catalog of a private nonprofit institution of higher education;
• not meeting a regional or statewide need consistent with the State Plan;
• unreasonable program duplication, which would cause demonstrable harm to another
institution; or
• violation of the State’s equal educational opportunity obligations under State and federal law.

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