The Board of Regents at University of Maryland recently approved a resolution declaring that the Eastern Shore Campus should remain an integral part of the University of Maryland and recommending merging Salisbury State College into the university.
The resolution came after weeks of discussion in response to a request from John W.T. Webb, chairman of the task force established by the State Board of Higher Education to conduct a feasibility study of creating a single higher education institution on the Lower Eastern Shore.
The task force is currently examining four alternatives. Under the first the Eastern Shore Campus and Salisbury State College would continue to operate separately; the second would merge specific programs and structures of the two institutions and administer them externally while maintaining the individuality of both schools. The third alternativie being studied is the creation of a single four year undergraduate institution, and the final alternative involves the creation of a single regional university.
"It is the opinion of the Board of Regents that there should continue to be a teaching unit of the University of Maryland on the Lower Eastern Shore," the board resolution stated. Noting the services, economic benefits and other contributions of the Eastern Shore Campus, the resolution affirmed that the campus "should remain an integral part of the university. It should be further developed as a land-grant institution with additional programs not new available in the state."
In order to enlarge the existing unit, the board favored making Salisbury State College a part of the University of Maryland. The resolutionhad the full support of University President Wilson H. Elkins and University Maryland Eastern Shore Chancellor William P. Hytche.
The board's statement and advantages of the merger would include an expanded curriculum for graduate study, the availability of the resources of the total university to more students, satisfying desegregation requirements, and the academic attraction that a combined school would be to state residents.
The State Board for Higher Education formed the seven-member task force in April with the charge to report its recommendations by Jan. 1, 1978. Closing either institution as an option has been completely rejected by State Board for Higher Education Commissioner Sheldon H. Knorr.