Editor’s note: This is part 1 of 2 in a series on the Jakubik Family Endowment Award.
The UMBC community is full of compassionate, caring people who love to give back to UMBC. Stan Jakubik and Justine Johnson are two of those people. Jakubik, a former Assistant Provost at UMBC and now the Assistant Vice Chancellor of the University System of Maryland, along with his family, established the Jakubik Family Endowment in the early 2000s. Their goal was to acknowledge the role that the staff plays in the success of students at UMBC.
Along with the Office of Institutional Advancement, Jakubik created an award that would recognize a staff member who went beyond the norm in helping UMBC students achieve their goals. While the award does include a monetary component, it was designed to highlight the contributions made by all staff to the overall academic and social environment at UMBC.
Today we’re meeting Stan Jakubik, the founder and namesake of the Jakubik Family Endowment, to find out why he’s such a big supporter of UMBC.
Q: What is your relationship to UMBC? How did you become involved with UMBC?
A: I was a member of the UMBC staff from 1980 through most of 1997. I originally was hired as Registrar, later became Registrar and Director of Academic Advising, finally moving to Assistant Provost in the early 1990s. I reluctantly left UMBC in 1997 to head up a project for the University System of Maryland, where I am currently Assistant Vice Chancellor.
Q: Could you share a favorite memory from your time here?
A: My most fond memories of UMBC involve the growth of team spirit among the staff over the years. In the mid 1980s, Michael Hooker became President and started the transition toward the academic powerhouse that is now UMBC, with Freeman later moving UMBC to the national acclaim it enjoys today. The staff supporting all of the changes became a critical part of UMBC’s success story by joining together to constantly try to find better ways to support students and faculty. There was a strong identity among the staff with the goals of UMBC, pushing bureaucracy aside and finding new ways to “make it happen.”
I must say my other fond memory is my daughter Stephanie’s graduation from UMBC and her first career steps, joining the UMBC staff in both the Shriver Center and Institutional Advancement.
Q: How do you hope your support will make UMBC a better place?
A: My daughter and I wanted to find a way to thank UMBC for the exceptional experiences we both had as staff members. We could think of no better way than to build a program to acknowledge the continuing efforts of UMBC people who want to make the experience of being a member of the UMBC community an exceptional positive period in the lives of our students. We wanted to publicize the achievements of those whose commitment to UMBC – and to the success of its students – set a very high bar for others to follow. I believe the award does that.
Q: Why do you think it’s important to give back to UMBC?
A: I think we all know that financial support from individuals is more critical today than it has ever been. What is most important, however, is that people associated with UMBC have an opportunity to give back in so many different ways. Financial support clearly is one, but volunteerism is another. Becoming involved in recruiting efforts, telling the story of UMBC in social media, mentoring students, and working the legislative issues that impact UMBC all provide the kind of support that UMBC needs. Supporting UMBC in whatever manner is appropriate to you will help UMBC to continue to be the incredible success story it is today.