The University of Maryland is expanding in Montgomery County with a new division in Rockville that will offer advanced and graduate courses in computer science, business and information systems management.
The division, to be called the University of Maryland Shady Grove, will open its doors in September in the Public Service Training Academy on Darnestown Road. It has expanded its offices in the academy building and taken over the entire second floor.
The university has been offering law enforcement and fire science courses there for more than 10 years, but officials said the new programs are designed to serve the county's growing high-technology industries.
University President John Toll said the Shady Grove campus also will have the first of the university's engineering extension offices where staff members will work with business and industry to customize the university's resources to fit the needs of area corporations.
The Shady Grove office will be the first of two outreach programs of the university's new Engineering Research Center, which was created at the request of Gov. Harry Hughes.
Toll also said that new computer terminals will be installed by January at Shady Grove with telephone connections to University College's new Instructional Computer Center.
Some of the Shady Grove classes will be linked to the College Park campus by instructional television (ITV). The university is currently using a two-way television hook-up to conduct classes for IBM employes in Manassas and Westinghouse employes at Baltimore-Washington International Airport.
"We felt we would build on what is in place, but the new dimension is a heavy emphasis on training people for the new computer era," said Robert G. Smith, the university's vice president for development.
The university also is studying the feasibility of establishing computer-linked library extensions at the new campus. Computer terminals at Shady Grove would make the library resources of the University of Maryland and 500 other colleges and universities available by photocopy or actual notes.
"In many ways, with the state of the art, it would be as good as and perhaps even more efficient than the normal library," Smith said. "Clearly it is a lot less expensive."
Smith stressed that the new Shady Grove division is not intended to compete with Montgomery College. "We work closely with Montgomery College and don't want to duplicate their services," he said. "We are aware that there is not now a four-year college or university presently in the county. That's why we are concentrating on the graduate and upper-level undergraduate levels."
Smith added that the Shady Grove campus is fundamentally similar to the university's planned research park in Prince George's County, but that the two would not be in conflict.
"That's one of the things we evaluated carefully. We have a mission to serve the entire state. Shady Grove will be focused on the research and development concept, but it will be in the life sciences," he said.