I was pleased to see you devote so much attention to the critical issue of student success and the incredible impact that UMBC has had in that regard ("Freeman Hrabowski's UMBC legacy grows as he celebrates 20 years as president," Sept. 1). The article captured the close attention that I received as an undergraduate at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, and that emphasis has only grown during President Hrabowski's tenure as president.

UMBC has become a national model by both demanding excellence and providing students with the support they need to succeed. The school's commitment to educating students of all backgrounds is striking because increasingly it is able to attract the most talented students.

The university's average combined SAT score for incoming freshman, for example, is now an impressive 1223. More importantly, UMBC is preparing its students to succeed, whether they stay or transfer to a university that offers programs that UMBC does not.

What the article did not state is that more than 75 percent of students who start at UMBC graduate from university within six years. Those graduates become successful workers, leaders, entrepreneurs and citizens, building our local economy and community. That is UMBC's ultimate legacy.

Bennett Moe, Columbia

The writer is president of the UMBC Alumni Association board of directors.