Why Preservation at Maryland?
Class sizes in the UMD preservation program are small, with a focus on seminar discussions. Lively interaction and frequent student presentations allow for a stimulating environment to discuss foundational ideas and texts as well as contemporary issues and concerns in the field.
The program’s faculty members are well networked in the Metro area and region and across the U.S., providing great connects with practicing professionals. Students also have multiple opportunities to attend local and national conferences and conventions, meeting and interacting with preservationists from across the country. One favorite has been National Lobby Day, held on Capitol Hill, where students not only see the process but can participate through meetings with their congressional delegates on issues of concern for the field.
Through coursework, charrettes, and field trips, preservation students have the opportunity to interact formally and informally with students in the School’s programs, including architecture, real estate, and community planning, and across the university (including history, American studies, anthropology, and landscape architecture) providing exciting cross-fertilization of ideas among scholars of the built environment.
Academic research is complemented by both project- and field-based professional training in documentation, policy, and interpretation to prepare our students for many aspects of contemporary preservation practice. Our students come from many different perspectives, and are employed in various aspects of the field from statewide easement review to historic interpretation of resources. Students leave Maryland with a portfolio of professional quality papers and reports that clearly demonstrate their abilities and competencies to potential employers.
Maryland students take a series of required courses in the preservation program to develop core professional and academic skills, then students are able to shape their education based on their interests and strengths. Though cooperation with numerous departments around the University and professionals and organizations across the region, students can explore various aspects of the broad field of preservation including archaeology, cultural landscape studies, and sustainability.
Location, Location, Location
College Park is located in the Baltimore-Washington urban corridor, which allows preservation professionals to serve as guest lecturers and adjunct faculty, providing Maryland students with up-to-date perspectives on current issues in the field. Our location also provides easy access to the many preservation organizations—local, state, and federal—in the area where our students take internships applying their knowledge and skills in real-world settings. The state of Maryland also provides a wide range of real-world settings, from urban to suburban to exurban and from the Atlantic seashore to the mountains of Appalachia.
With a placement rate of about 80% at 1 year after graduation, HISP students get jobs. Across the country and around the world, UMD alumni work to preserve our historic built environment in a wide variety of fields. Nearly half of our graduates work for government at all levels, ranging from federal positions at the National Park Service; to State Historic Preservation Office jobs in North Carolina, Massachusetts and Texas; to positions in local government such as the City Planning Department of Gaithersburg, MD. Nearly a quarter of graduates also work in architecture firms across the country, designing new solutions for our historic built environment. Other graduates manage projects at historic sites and museums, administer historic property easements with non-profits, and oversee cultural tourism efforts in heritage areas. Click here for a list of organizations employing UMD graduates.