Our guest on the “Future-Proof” podcast this week is Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, president of the University of Maryland Baltimore County who recently announced his retirement after three decades at the helm of UMBC. He will officially step down in June 2022.

He’s a leader in every sense of the word, particularly when it comes to educating and graduating an incredibly diverse and inclusive student body. Consider these quotes from The Baltimore Sun:

  • “His achievement in shaping the right academic culture to enable Black, Asian and Hispanic students from modest backgrounds to excel in the sciences and technology, elevated Hrabowski to a national leader in higher education.”
  • “Despite opportunities to jump to elite institutions, he remained stubbornly loyal to UMBC — committed to transforming the suburban, commuter campus into what he believes will soon be recognized as among the nation’s top research universities.”
  • “The campus now educates 14,000 students, up from 10,000, and includes a research park with 130 companies. UMBC’s graduation rate is now about 70%, up from less than 52% two decades ago.”
  • “Between 2010 and 2019, UMBC had more Black graduates receive doctorates in the sciences and engineering — 146, according to federal government data — than any other university in the nation, eclipsing historically Black colleges and universities like Howard University and academic powerhouses like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Cornell University.”

So of course I wanted to talk with him. The fact that he also had some interesting things to say about accounting and finance — and that he said it all with UMBC alum and former AICPA and MACPA Chair Kimberly Ellison-Taylor,  who joins us for the interview — makes this a conversation to remember.

Listen to our conversation in its entirety:



Future-Proof is a production of Crate Media.

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