Sitting right outside of Washington, D.C., in Prince George's County, is the public University of Maryland Terrapins
, College Park. With nearly 40,000 students enrolled, the University of Maryland is the largest in the state. The school offers undergraduate 100 majors and has over 120 graduate areas of study. Since this university is located so close to Washington, D.C., there are many ways in which students have opportunities to work with the Federal Government. There are thirteen different colleges and they are: A. James Clark School of Engineering, College of Agriculture and Natural resources, College of Arts and Humanities, School of Music, School of Public Policy, Office of Undergraduate Studies, School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, School of Public Health, Robert H. Smith School of Business, Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, college of Education, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences, and College of Behavioral and Social Sciences.
In 1856, the university got its start as the Maryland Agricultural College and stayed that way until 1916. Charles Benedict Calvert, believing strongly in the agricultural education, gave the university 420 acres, founded the school, and put two of his son's in the very first graduating class of 34 students. The school was an important site during the Civil War. It housed 6,000 of the Union's Troops en route to help General Grant in Virginia. Later in the year, 400 Confederate Soldiers stayed at the college and the President of the Maryland Agricultural College threw a party for the soldiers. Because of dropping numbers of students during the war, the college was forced to sell 200 acres and eventually file for bankruptcy. The college was then used as a preparatory school for boys. After the war, Maryland decided to get the college out of bankruptcy and was granted ownership of half of the school. Therefore, the Agricultural College became part of the state institution. Moving forward with eleven students, the growing enrollment in the college soon helped the Agricultural College out of debt. In 1916, total control over the school was given to the state and the name was changed to Maryland State College and females were admitted. Then in 1920, after a combining of Baltimore schools, the college was named University of Maryland
After going through so much, they are still standing tall. In 1912, there was a bad fire that destroyed the all of the student housing, most academic buildings, and all student and school records. In today's money, nearly $6 Million in damage was done. After the bankruptcy issue, this seemed as if the school was going to just go down with the fire. The President at the time, Richard Silvester, was so devastated that he resigned but the students did not throw in the towel. All the students showed up as soon as their Thanksgiving was over wanting classes to resume as if all was normal. Maryland recovered and new buildings were built. Some 80 years later, a vicious tornado hit the area and killed two students and damaged many of the buildings. Twelve of the buildings had over $15 million worth of damage done. Since then, the school has not only rebuilt but also added many buildings, including the largest building in the state, the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center. Many plans are still being made for more expansion on the campus.