Chesapeake College, founded in 1965 as Maryland’s first regional community college, was developed to serve the needs of the upper and middle Eastern Shore. More than 40 years after its founding, the College continues to respond to the growing needs of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties, which comprise its service area.
In 1965, the Maryland General Assembly adopted legislation providing for the creation of regional community colleges. That same year, three members each from Caroline, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties’ school boards met with representatives from the Maryland State Department of Education to plan for Chesapeake College, which was chartered December 22, 1965.
Shortly after Dr. George Silver, the College’s first president, assumed his duties in July 1966, a 170-acre site near Wye Mills, bordered by U.S. Route 50 and Maryland Routes 662 and 213 was purchased. The Washington, D.C., architectural firm of McLeod, Ferrara, and Ensign was engaged to develop a master plan. Phase I construction, started that year, included five buildings: Humanities, Science, Library/Administration, College Center, and Gymnasium.
Classes opened in September 1967, in the Queen Anne’s County High School in Centreville, with an enrollment of 260 students taking classes in the late afternoons and evenings. During that year, the administrative staff, faculty, and library were housed in the Kennard Elementary School in Centreville. Beginning in September 1968, its second year, the College took gradual occupancy of the five new buildings at Wye Mills. Chesapeake College graduated its first class in May 1969.
The new campus was dedicated, Dr. Silver was formally inaugurated, and the College held its first Homecoming Weekend during the 1969–70 school year. The College reached another milestone with full accreditation granted by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools as Chesapeake’s third academic year drew to a close.
A new Board of Trustees, appointed by the Governor on July 1, 1974, saw ground broken for construction of the Technical Center and for an addition to the Physical Education building that would house the College’s Olympic-size pool.
The opening of these new buildings for the 1976-77 academic year increased the College’s ability to serve its public, and the traditionally strong liberal arts and sciences, career, occupational, and technical curricula were expanded. These programs continue to grow, and the College later constructed a Manufacturing Training Center building to house workshops, classrooms, and equipment.
Dr. Robert C. Schleiger was inaugurated as the College’s second president in 1976. As enrollment at Chesapeake continued to climb and campus buildings were fully utilized, the College offered credit and non-credit courses at locations throughout the four support counties and in Dorchester County.
The vote by Dorchester County, in June 1979, to join Chesapeake as a full-support county was a direct outgrowth of the first full-time satellite center in Cambridge, which opened in August 1978.
An Early Childhood Development Center was constructed in 1989 to serve the parents of preschoolers who are students at the College, faculty and staff members, and the community. The center also provides classroom experience for students pursuing a career in Early Childhood Education.
Dr. John R. Kotula, who assumed his duties as the College’s third president in March 1992, presided over an era of expansion. The Chesapeake College Cambridge Center, a full-service satellite campus, opened for the 1994-95 academic year, and the College’s Center for Business and the Arts opened in 1996 with offices, classrooms and a 500-seat Performing Arts Center.
The College, which previously offered only an Associate of Arts degree, added the Associate of Science and Associate of Applied Science degrees. Three intercollegiate sports—women’s basketball, soccer and softball—have been added since 1992, when College officials announced expansion of the athletic program.
Dr. Stuart M. Bounds, the fourth President of Chesapeake College, assumed his duties in 1997 and led Chesapeake through another significant growth period involving new partnerships.
In 1997, Chesapeake College and the Macqueen Gibbs Willis (MGW) School of Nursing merged to offer nursing degrees and certificates. The Chesapeake College MGW Nursing Program and other health career programs are based at the Chesapeake College Center for Allied Health in The Memorial Hospital at Easton.
The College continues to reach out to all segments of the community by partnering with local organizations, such as the Workforce Investment Board to provide training and retraining in business and technical subjects. Partnerships with Departments of Social Service and Local Management Boards help the College to serve diverse populations with special needs. The Upper Shore Manufacturing & Business Council and the Small Business Development Center provide a connection to the many manufacturing and other business organizations in the region. The College also moved forward with Distance Learning opportunities at several sites in the five-county region served by the College and is pursuing other endeavors.
In 1998, Chesapeake joined with Salisbury University, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Washington College and Wor-Wic Community College to form the Eastern Shore Association of Colleges.
In 2002 the College opened a 49,000 square-foot Learning Resource Center, which contains the library, computer labs and Student Support Services. The Eastern Shore Higher Education Center opened in 2003 to provide baccalaureate and graduate coursework on Chesapeake’s campus through various partner institutions.
The fall of 2003 marked the end of renovations to the Dorchester Administration Building, where the Office of Student Success, the Registration Office and the Business Office are housed to provide enhanced services to Chesapeake students. A new mezzanine level in the Performing Arts Center opened in 2004 with an additional 300 seats for the theatre. The renovated and expanded Caroline College Center opened in 2006. The Talbot Science Center was also renovated in 2007.
Dr. Bounds retired in June 2008, and Dr. Barbara A. Viniar was named Chesapeake’s fifth president. She began her tenure on July 1, 2008 and was officially inaugurated on March 27, 2009.
In 2010, a renovation to the Kent Humanities Building was completed. As the first phase of the Center for Leadership and Environmental Learning (CLEEn), Chesapeake dedicated a wind turbine on campus in the fall of 2011.
Chesapeake College will harness the talent and resources necessary for students, employees, and citizens of the region to thrive as individuals and as contributors to their communities and to society.
Chesapeake College is a comprehensive public two-year regional community college serving the educational needs of the residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Upper Eastern Shore. The college’s core commitment is to prepare students from diverse communities to excel in further education and employment in a global society. We put students first, offering transformative educational experiences. Our programs and services are comprehensive, responsive and affordable. The college is a catalyst for regional economic development and sustainability and a center for personal enrichment and the arts.
In particular, the college embraces its commitment to student learning in the following ways:
• Prepare students as independent learners who are intellectually competent, skilled in the application of learning, technologically proficient, and grounded in the values and common goals of our civic culture.
• Challenge students to see beyond themselves to better understand their place in a global society and culturally diverse world, while preserving and enhancing the rich cultural heritage of the region.
• Provide a curriculum and activities that meet the needs of an increasingly diverse student population.
• Enhance learning opportunities, in partnership with community organizations that reinforce the value of service to others and strengthen students’ ethical development and civic engagement.
• Ensure an environment conducive for learning by providing appropriate facilities, support services and other resources to enhance student learning.
The College offers a large selection of credit and continuing education offerings designed to help students prepare for transfer to upper level institutions, for immediate entry into a career, or for enhancing work-related skills. Beyond the curricula, the college offers many opportunities for further academic, social, personal, cultural, and athletic development through a rich variety of extracurricular and co-curricular activities.
To enhance student learning and to promote teaching excellence, the college commits to providing a supportive learning environment characterized by a dedicated, caring and highly qualified faculty and staff. The college offers all employees professional development opportunities that are aligned with goals outlined in its Strategic Plan. Through these commitments, the college nurtures a community of lifelong learners among faculty, staff and students.
In addition, the college embraces its commitment to regional economic and community development that will improve the quality of life by acting on the following:
• Support workforce development by providing the courses and training needed to build a skilled labor force.
• Enhance enjoyment and appreciation of the arts by incorporating cultural activities into the curriculum and bringing fine and performing arts events to the region.
• Sponsor a broad range of community and civic activities that reflect the college’s role as a community-learning center.
• Extend access to baccalaureate and graduate degree programs for Upper Shore residents through inter-institutional partnerships.
At Chesapeake College we are guided by the following core values:
Quality: Creating a learning environment that establishes high standards for individual excellence.
Student-centeredness: Encouraging and supporting each student to achieve his or her greatest potential.
Community: Engaging our community and serving as a catalyst for positive change.
Diversity and Respect: Fostering inclusiveness and an appreciation for individual differences.
Adaptability: Responding rapidly to local and global change.
Teamwork and Collaboration: Working together to share ideas, knowledge, and creative solutions.
Responsibility: Taking responsibility for our actions, acting as stewards of our resources, and adhering to the highest standards of ethical and civic behavior.
Chesapeake College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. (267-284-5000) The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation; and is authorized to grant the degrees of Associate of Arts, Associate of Arts in Teaching, Associate of Science and Associate of Applied Science by the Maryland Higher Education Commission. The College is also approved for veterans’ benefits by the Maryland Higher Education Commission.
Allied Health Programs: the Radiologic Sciences Program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology; the Physical Therapist Assistant Program at Chesapeake College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education and the American Physical Therapy Association; the Surgical Technology Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), and the Nursing Program is approved by the Maryland Board of Nursing, and is accredited by the National League of Nursing Accrediting Commission.
Chesapeake College is a member of the Maryland Association of Community Colleges, American Association of Community Colleges and the Association of Community College Trustees.
Equal Opportunity Policy and Complaint Procedures
Chesapeake College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons so that no person, on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, age, national origin, ancestry, sex/gender, marital status, genetic information, disability, pregnancy, military status, sexual orientation, or any other class protected by law, shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity of this College. Under this policy, this College will not discriminate against any person on the grounds of race, color, religion, creed, age, sex, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, military status or any other class protected by law, in its admission policies and practices of the College relating to the treatment of students or other people in employment, the providing of services, financial aid, and other benefits and including the use of any building, structure, room, materials, equipment, facilities, or any other property.
Chesapeake College, as a recipient of federal financial assistance, is required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, as amended, not to discriminate on the basis of sex in the educational programs or activities which it operates. Chesapeake College is also covered by and complies with Title VI and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color or national origin, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1975 both of which prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. The College is also covered by federal and state laws prohibiting discrimination in employment. The Director of Human Resources serves as the College’s Equal Opportunity Officer, and is the designated compliance officer under Title VI, Title VII, Title IX, Section 504 and ADA Title II.
Any person who believes he or she has been subjected to any form of prohibited discrimination, including violations of any of these laws, may file a complaint of discrimination with the Director of Human Resources. Copies of the complaint procedure will be provided on request. All complaints will be investigated by the College, and if a violation is found, prompt corrective action will be taken. Persons dissatisfied with the results may appeal to the College President.
Privacy Rights of Students/Student Rights under FERPA
Chesapeake College is committed to protecting the privacy of each student’s education record. The College will release any or all of a student’s education record to third parties only under the following circumstances:
- If the College is required to do so by law;
- If the student provides the College with written permission as outlined in the Federal Education Records Privacy Act (FERPA);
- In the event of a health or safety emergency as outlined in FERPA and interpreted by the College administration.
Parental disclosure will take place in accordance with the policy outlined above. Students will be informed of their right to provide their parents (or any other third party of their choosing) access to their education record during the College’s academic advising process. The College will provide information to parents, in both electronic and hard-copy forms, regarding the process for gaining access to a student’s education records.
Disclosure of information contained in a student’s education record will take place through the Office of Registration, which will certify that the student has provided written permission for the College to release information from the education record to the third party requesting that information. The responsibility for disclosure of information from a student record and oversight of this process rests with the Registrar or his/her designee.
FERPA gives students the right to inspect and review all educational records with the following exceptions: financial records of student’s parents, confidential letters, or statements placed in the file prior to January 1, 1975, and psychiatric or medical records retained by a professional for treatment purposes.
Chesapeake College is committed to maintaining a working and learning environment in which students and staff can develop intellectually, professionally, personally, and socially. Such an environment must be free of intimidation, fear, coercion and reprisal. The College prohibits harassment in all forms, including harassment for the following reasons: race, color, religion, creed, age, national origin, ancestry, sex/gender, marital status, genetic information, disability, pregnancy, military status, sexual orientation, or any other class protected by law. Special attention should be paid to the prohibition of sexual harassment. Inquiries concerning the College’s full harassment and grievance procedures may be directed to the Office of Student Success or the Director of Human Resources.
Student Right-to-Know and Other Consumer Information
Details on obtaining consumer information are available in a notice published in the College’s credit schedule and from the College’s Website at www.chesapeake.edu/consumer. See Appendices 3 and 4 for the College’s graduation and transfer-out rates and campus crime report.
How to Determine Residence Status
The Board of Trustees of Chesapeake College has established the following policy to determine student domicile for the purpose of establishing different tuition rates. For the purpose of this policy, the “domicile” is taken to mean “a person’s permanent place of abode, where physical presence and possessions are maintained and where the student intends to remain for an indefinite period of time.”
To be eligible for county resident tuition, a student must be legally domiciled in Maryland, in Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, or Talbot counties for at least three months prior to the start date of the semester at Chesapeake College.
To be eligible for state tuition rates, a student must be legally domiciled in Maryland for at least three months prior to the start date of the semester at Chesapeake College. All other students are determined to be out-of-state residents.
Students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents not holding an Alien Registration Receipt card are classified as out-of-state students. For non-U.S. citizens to be considered a Maryland resident for the purpose of this policy, the student shall possess the legal capacity under state and federal law to establish Maryland domicile. All students with an F, B, or J visa status must pay out-of-state tuition. Consult with the Registrar for tuition rates for other visa statuses.
At the time of admission to or enrollment in any credit course at Chesapeake College, each student shall sign a statement affirming his domicile claims. The burden of proof is upon the student. At the time of each subsequent enrollment, each student must indicate in a new statement whether his domicile is the same as or different from that initially affirmed.
The domicile of a minor or of a person who receives more than one-half of his financial support from others is in the domicile of the person contributing the greatest proportion of support, without regard to relationship by kinship or marriage. In determining the factual basis for domicile declared by the student, College officials shall consider any or all of the following factors and may request evidence for substantiation:
- Ownership or rental of local living quarters;
- Substantially uninterrupted physical presence, including the months when the student is not in attendance at the College;
- Maintaining the presence of all or substantially all of the student’s possessions;
- Payment of Maryland state and local income taxes;
- Registration to vote in the state and resident county;
- Registration of a motor vehicle in Maryland, with a local address specified;
- Possession of a valid Maryland driver’s license with a local address specified.
In addition to the general requirements above, specific provisions for determining domicile also apply to military personnel and dependents, foreign nationals, students in statewide and regional programs, reciprocal agreements between states, and contracts with business and industry. Information regarding these specific provisions may be obtained from the Office of the Registrar. A student may request a change in residency classification or an appeal of current residency status by contacting the Office of the Registrar.