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University of Maryland Media Policy and FAQs

Media Policy

The University of Maryland aims to service media requests with accurate and timely information while also telling the story of the university and its leadership, faculty, students and alumni.

Media that are visiting UMD's campus are asked to notify University Communications in advance by emailing mediainfo@umd.edu, dialing 301.257.0073 or by communicating directly with any member of the University Communications staff.  Exceptions include members of the media covering athletics. Those individuals should coordinate directly with the UMD Athletics Communications Office.

Reading through the Frequently Asked Questions below allows the university to better serve common media requests.


I would like to film or photograph on campus. What do I need to know?

Due to the quickly evolving coronavirus situation, the university is not approving any non-news/commercial requests to film on campus at this time. Thank you for your understanding.

News Photography and Filming on Campus - As a public institution, the university permits media to photograph and film University of Maryland outdoor spaces. However, media are not permitted to photograph or film inside any building on campus without explicit permission from University Communications (contact info above). Depending on the type of request, a campus escort may be required.

Commercial Filming – All commercial filming should be coordinated and approved through the office of University Communications.  Except for news media and university marketing, filming within indoor and outdoor spaces requires a signed film agreement and is subject to a daily fee and insurance documentation.

The filming guidelines state:
All requests by media and students to film on campus must be accompanied by a completed filming application. Please submit your application to University Communications at a minimum of 10 business days prior to your film date request.

All requests to film at a UMD athletics facility must be coordinated through University Athletics. Please contact Josh Kaplan at 301.314.9729.

A Filming Fee of $1,000 per day is required in advance for all non-news/commercial filming.
A Certificate of Insurance for $1,000,000 (with a 30-day cancellation notice which names the University of Maryland as an additional insured) is required in advance for all filming.

Other service fees may apply:

  • Security Aide Escorts (required for all filming not involving UMD faculty or staff)
  • Room rental
  • Parking permits

All requests will receive a timely response via e-mail. Please note that business hours are Monday - Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.; weekend and holiday requests will not be addressed until the next business day. University Communications reserves the right to decline any request.

Find additional information on commercial film contracts and student film projects here.

How do I find publicly available data on student profiles or tuition?

Data Requests – The university provides a wealth of data through UMD Institutional Research Planning and Assessment Campus Counts reports. Data requests should begin with the IRPA Profiles database, and additional information can be provided by contacting University Communications. For college-specific data, please refer to individual college websites.

Tuition and fees information can be accessed on the University System of Maryland website.

How do I verify if someone attended, graduated or was affiliated with UMD?

To verify attendance, affiliation or an earned degree from the university, dial 301.257.0073 or contact us at mediainfo@umd.edu during business hours.   After-hour inquiries will be responded to on the next business day.

Who are the Public Information Officers for the university?

Public Information Officers – Katie Lawson serves as the Public Information Officer and Chief Communications Officer for the University of Maryland, and Sgt. Roseanne Hoaas serves as the Public Information Officer for the University of Maryland Police Department.

What information can I access about students in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that protects the privacy of "student education records."  A student education record includes any recorded information directly related to a student maintained by the University.  With limited exceptions, the University may not release student education records without student consent.  

FERPA allows the University to designate and publically disclose certain information that is generally considered not harmful or an invasion of privacy.  This information is referred to as "Directory Information."  UMD has designated the following information as "Directory information:"  Name, Address, Telephone Number, Email Address,  Date of Birth, Major, Participation in Officially Recognized Activities and  Sports, Weight and Height of members of athletic teams, Dates of Attendance, Degrees and Awards Received, and the most recent previous educational institution attended.

FERPA gives students the opportunity to "opt out" and not permit their "Directory Information" to be shared publically. While media may request "Directory Information," the University may not be able to provide it without student consent if the student has exercised his/her right to opt out.

How do I file a Public Information Act or Freedom of Information Act request?

Public Information Act – To review or obtain copies of University of Maryland records, you must make a written request under Maryland's Public Information Act (PIA). The Maryland PIA gives the public the right to review and obtain copies of disclosable public records from Maryland state agencies. Find more information on submitting a request on the UMD Office of Legal Affairs website. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests are applicable in the federal agency context.

How do I reach University Communications after hours?

On-Call Phone – It's a priority for the university to be responsive, transparent and accessible to media. After business hours on evening and weekends, University Communications staff can be reached on-call at 301.257.0073. If you don't reach someone live, please leave a voicemail and your call will be promptly returned.

How do I receive information if there is a safety incident or crisis on campus?

Information will be posted as soon as it's available on the @UMDRightNow Twitter account.

Media may receive updates when UMD Alerts are issued by the University of Maryland Police Department by accessing: @UMPD on Twitter, University of Maryland Department of Public Safety on Facebook, and the UMPD news site

Where can I find photos of the University of Maryland?

Stock Photography – A select number of iconic campus beauty shots are available for media use and can be found here: universityofmaryland.zenfolio.com/media.

The University of Maryland Photo Collection can be found at http://universityofmaryland.zenfolio.com. Access to this full collection requires a name and email address when prompted.  Photo usage is subject to permission, usage fees and copyright restrictions as required by the University of Maryland.  Images from the collection may not be sold or licensed for sale or publications.

All photos must be credited to John T. Consoli/University of Maryland, unless otherwise noted in the caption information.

For questions, please contact Gail Rupert, photo archivist, at gcinoski@umd.edu. If this is an urgent media request and/or after business hours, please call the UMD on-call phone at 301.257.0073.