University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) is proud of its long legacy of providing degree programs for U.S. military learners around the world. Every day, UMGC staff work with thousands of servicemembers, veterans and their family members to assure their academic success. Many of those university team members have connections with the armed forces, and they see their engagement with students as a continued commitment to their country and community.
For Fay Madlangbayan, however, the path is reversed.
Madlangbayan, a senior certification specialist in UMGC’s Veteran’s Certification Office (VCO), will have completed nearly a decade of service to UMGC learners when she leaves the university this fall to join the U.S. Air Force as an aerospace medical technician.
“Ever since I was 19, I’ve wanted to join the military,” she said. “Working with military members for as long as I have, I’ve seen what the military has to offer.”
Madlangbayan, a military spouse, was a UMGC student when she joined the university staff in 2011, working as an Asia field representative in Okinawa. She was promoted to field enrollment manager after less than a year. Her time in Japan was among the most fulfilling periods of her UMGC career, she said.
“Just seeing the impact we can have on a student’s life and career trajectory—that’s why I stayed with UMGC,” she explained.
Madlangbayan left UMGC for a stateside move in 2014 but rejoined the Asia division in 2018 as a student services coordinator at Yokota Air Force Base. She transitioned to an academic advising role back in Okinawa the following year. In 2021, she became a military education coordinator in San Diego, before joining the VCO a year later.
“We are so proud of Fay and her commitment to UMGC and its military-affiliated students,” said Stateside Military Operations Vice President and Director Kelly Wilmeth. “From her starting point in Asia, to serving as a military education coordinator in San Diego, to her final position as a senior certification specialist in the VCO, Fay has excelled in every role.
“Fay exemplifies the university’s commitment not just to military and veteran students, but also to their spouses and being an employer of choice for them as well,” Wilmeth added.
Madlangbayan said her work with UMGC marked a time of significant personal growth, and her UMGC education, a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, positioned her well for her new military career. The degree enables Madlangbayan to complete her basic military training as an airman first class, a higher rank than many of her fellow recruits.
“UMGC has been nothing but supportive,” she said, singling out Asia Vice President and Director Jim Cronin and Wilmeth as having helped her throughout her time with the university. While excited about her next career adventure, Madlangbayan said she treasures the relationships she forged during her time at UMGC.
“I’m so grateful that I have these lifelong friends that I’ve known for 12 years now,” she said.