Since he was a child in Segregated Birmingham, Alabama, Freeman Hrabowski has had a love for education.

When he was a child, he found joy in solving mathematical problems and reading poetry volumes and prose transmitted by his parents, so much teachers, who always emphasized the importance of education. The lessons he learned from them, as well as in the segregated classrooms and the black churches that fought for change, formed their ambitions to become an educator and finally took him to the University of Maryland Baltimore County, where Hrabowski has spent more than three decades as president.

The other guide force in his childhood was activism. Navigating his own experiences with discrimination at an early age, Hrabowski found strength in the struggle for equality that grabbed Birmingham. In the classroom and in the streets, Hrabowski looked for a better life. And as the president of Long Data Umbc, he has spent 30 years trying to change the lives of others through the transforming power of ED. >

Now, as Hrabowski prepares to retire, she is looking back in her years as president and a whole life life. At the same time, he is advancing to what the future holds for UmbC and his successor.

The man

Hrabowski was born in what he describes as the black middle class of Birmingham. His parents had an activist streak, although his father finally left education to work in a steel factory for a better pay. Her mother was fired from a nearby school district for the main protests that demanded a better payment for black teachers before Birmingham hired her. His own parents transmitted his belief in the value of education. His hunchbacked school books were from the white schools, but, nevertheless, he absorbed his content, as well as the lessons taught by his parents and teachers.

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“We were very fortunate to teach us two things. One, you must be twice as good, because the world is not fair for color children. And two, we should not allow others to define who we are, ”he said.

A talented student, Hrabowski finished eighth grade at age 11. 12, he was arrested for participating in the march of the children of Birmingham, part of the civil rights movement. He vividly remembers being in the church and listening to Martin Luther King Jr. encourage children to join March. The academic program honors Freeman Hrabowski's legacy

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