UMUC Supports Local Community During the Holidays with Angel Tree Donations

By Ashley Boarman (aboarman@mghus.com) |   January 12, 2011

ADELPHI, MD (January 21, 2011)—UMUC announced today that it has helped approximately 7,000 children and teens in Prince George’s County, Maryland, through the Salvation Army’s annual Angel Tree Program, which solicits gifts from donors and distributes those gifts to underprivileged children. For 15 years, university staff members have supported the program, helping brighten the holidays for children and families in need. Today, UMUC stands as one of the largest contributors to the program in Prince George’s County, adopting several hundred "angels" each year.

The Angel Tree Program is administered by the Salvation Army and each year compiles lists of children in need. Details like age, gender, clothing and shoe size, along with a wish list from each child, are printed on cardboard angels. Donors subsequently adopt the "angels," purchase gifts that match each child's wish list, and the gifts are returned to the Salvation Army, which in turn distributes them to the individual homes.

UMUC’s involvement in the program dates back to 1996, when Pat Musick recruited her colleagues in UMUC’s Graduate School of Management and Technology to help her spread happiness and cheer during the holidays. That first year, they provided gifts for 25 "angels"; the following year, they adopted 100 more. Support grew from there, and this past holiday season, under the leadership of Darcie Rothwell, chair of the Special Projects committee on the Adelphi Staff Advisory Council (ASAC), and with the support of other ASAC members, UMUC personnel provided gifts for 367 children in the community.

"I am so proud of UMUC’s support for this wonderful program," said UMUC President Susan C. Aldridge, "and equally grateful for this opportunity to be good community citizens while helping to brighten the holidays for children and teens in need. It is a marvelous way for our UMUC 'family' to reach out to others in the local community and lend a helping hand."