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What a year it’s been — a look back at Towson achievement

There have been many memorable moments of Towson University achievement in the last year. From arts and athletics to service and science, our students, faculty, staff and campus have given us stories of great success.

Here we take a look back at some of those points of pride.

SGA Award thumbOur students have set the bar for achievement. For the third time in the past four years, Towson won the Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition. TU physics major Zoey Warecki won the 2014 Outstanding Student Award for Undergraduate Research from the National Society of Physics Students (SPS), American Institute of Physics. The debate team made history as the first black female pair ever to win a Cross Examination Debate Association national championship. The university named the first eight recipients of a scholarship for future educators donated by internationally renowned author James Patterson. The Student Government Association received national attention for its “What’s Your Stand?” video that was released for National Diversity Awareness Month in October. And three undergraduate students were just awarded prestigious Gilman scholarships to study abroad.

US news thumbNational rankings continue to roll in for the university. Towson was once again named to The Princeton Review’s Guide to 332 Green Colleges, and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance ranked it one of 2014′s 100 “best values in public colleges.” The U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 America’s Best Colleges guide ranked Towson University 11th in the public Regional Universities (north) category, and the publication also recognized Towson for its diligent work in supporting veteran students by ranking the institution among the best regional universities. Towson was also named a “Military Friendly School” for the fifth consecutive year by G.I. Jobs magazine.

Our distinguished faculty continue to live up to their reputation with award-winning research and innovation. Jonathan Lazar has acquired a U.S. patent for a new, more user-friendly SoundsRight CAPTCHA. Sean McComb, an adjunct faculty member, was named National Teacher of the Year.

Football thumbIt has also been a banner year for Towson athletics. The 5,200-seat, state-of-the-art SECU Arena opened to rave reviews. The football team competed in its first-ever FCS national championship game, in front of 19,800 fans and a national television audience on ESPN. Women’s lacrosse won the CAA tournament championship for an unprecedented third consecutive year. The Towson dance team captured its 16th consecutive national championship. Fifty-three percent of Towson student-athletes finished the year with a GPA of 3.0 or higher, an increase of 13 percent over last year’s figure of 40 percent.

Institutional achievements include Towson’s participation in the U.S. Department of Energy “Better Business Challenge,” whereby we committing to reduce campus-wide energy use by 20 percent by the year 2020. Towson also became the first public university in Maryland to offer a middle school teacher preparation major. And crime on Towson’s campus was reported at its lowest point in nearly two decades.

Thank you students, faculty and staff, for giving us so much to be proud of.

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