University Chancellor

Honored for Leadership William E. "Brit" Kirwan, chancellor for the University System of Maryland, has been awarded the Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant College's Commission on Human Resources and Social Change, the oldest higher-education association in the nation. The annual award was presented to Kirwan during an awards luncheon in Chicago on Nov. 10.

Kirwan, chairman of the commission since 2001, was recognized for his leadership in advancing student access and opportunity, and the promotion of students and faculty diversity.

In addition to the award, Kirwan, a native of Kentucky who has a doctorate and a master's degree from Rutgers University, also was named chairman-elect of the organization's board of directors. He will take over the gavel in 2004.

Largo Basketball Star

To Play for Wake Forest

Melissa Washington, a senior basketball star at Largo High School, signed a letter-of-intent Nov. 13 to attend Wake Forest University next school year on a full athletic scholarship.

Washington, a 6-foot 4-inch center, averaged 12 points per game as a junior and was named a 2001-02 Prince George's County division 4A All-League player.

Shuttle Carries Tidings

From Calverton, Gaywood

Calverton Elementary School in Beltsville and Gaywood Elementary School in Lanham will be two of 551 participants in this year's Student Signatures in Space Program. The Space shuttle Endeavour, which was to launch Monday, is carrying posters with signatures from about 500,000 students in the United States and around the world who participated this year.

Student Signatures in Space, a program of NASA's Space Day educational initiative, provides elementary and middle school students the opportunity to send their digitized signatures into space and feel a personal involvement with the mission. NASA created the program to help motivate students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

There is no cost to schools participating in Students Signatures in Space. Lockheed Martin Corp. provides the posters, NASA flight certificates and photographs of the space shuttle crew. Because of space restraints on each mission, participation is limited to approximately 500 schools each year. Schools wishing to sign up for Student Signatures in Space 2003 can register online at

-- Willie Pugh

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