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EDITOR’S NOTE:  We officially changed our name from University of Maryland University College (UMUC) to University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) on July 1, 2019. News stories posted on the Global Media Center are now using the new UMGC name. However, because the transition to the university’s new name will take several months to complete, you may still see the UMUC name, logo and look on our website and other materials through early 2020.

When members of the Overseas Marylanders Association (OMA) get together for a reunion, as they did in Adelphi on June 21-22, the stories of adventure are in abundance.

These faculty members, sent abroad to teach on military bases in far-flung places around the world, were expected to make do with little support and less than ideal conditions for learning. But the experiences of teaching active-duty military personnel were often the highlights of their academic careers.

The administrative and logistical challenges of getting faculty and books where they needed to be every eight weeks for each new course session was no small task. Joe Arden, who started out with University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) as a faculty member, headed the university’s Europe Division throughout most of the 1980s when the number of enrollments reached 50,000 per year, which was larger than that of most public universities in the U.S. at that time.

OMA alumni at the group's 2019 reunion

The OMA reunion included several screenings of “Over There,” the 2018 award-winning documentary about, well, these same UMGC administrators, faculty and staff who served overseas, as well as a “State of the University” address by UMGC President Javier Miyares.

After his remarks, Miyares recognized four former heads of the university’s overseas divisions for their “long-standing meritorious service and leadership in support of the public mission of University of Maryland Global Campus” and conferred the honorary title, Vice President Emerita, Overseas Programs, on Joe Arden, John Golembe, Julian Jones and Paula Harbecke.

Arden was hired as a faculty member in 1967 and went on to head both the Asia and Europe divisions during a 40-year UMGC career. Golembe joined UMGC overseas as a librarian in 1978 and held a number of positions, including director of UMGC Europe from 2004 to 2006. Julian Jones spent 28 years at UMGC as a faculty member and head of the Asia Division. Harbecke also served as a faculty member and head of both the Europe and Asia divisions during her 20-year UMGC career. Follow the links in the UMGC story "Have Syllabus Will Travel," to learn more about their stories and the stories of other Overseas Marylanders.

Cover photo: Joe Arden (left) and Julian Jones with UMGC President Javier Miyares after receiving their honors.