Terp Discovery

How the Program Works

How Terp Discovery Works

Courses | Residential or Commuter | Activities | Program Staff

Terp Discovery Scholars are exposed to intensive learning through high standards and expectations. In the classroom, innovative instructors encourage creative problem solving as Scholars attend class and work on projects. Interactive activities introduce participants to what Maryland offers. Whether living on campus or commuting from home, students discover how great campus life is at UMD!


Discovery Scholars select one course and are encouraged to make a second choice in the event that a course becomes full before the application is processed. Classes meet every day, Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., and students should expect to purchase books, class packets, or supplies. Course syllabi provide information on these additional requirements. To view and select your course, click here.

Residential or Commuter

Discovery Scholars select whether to on-campus or commute from home.


Afternoon Activities: Commuter and residential students attend physical fitness workshops, tours of the Observatory, Campus Farm, The Clarice and more, and enjoy the Terp Zone and an ice cream social.

Social Activities: Residential students attend evening and weekend activities that include a weekend day-trip to Washington, DC, pool parties, movie nights, and more.

Program Staff

Matthew Nessan, Associate Director, Programs: A returned Peace Corps volunteer, Matthew has been working in higher education since 2011. His professional experiences include university teaching, post-secondary accreditation, and graduate program administration. He received his BA in English from Texas Christian University and his MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the University of Southern California. He is currently a doctoral candidate at the George Washington University Graduate School of Education and Human Development. Originally from Montana, Matthew is an avid college football fan who enjoys hiking, camping, and new experiences abroad.

Lenaya Stewart, Program Coordinator: Lenaya is dedicated to supporting academic success. She loves helping students discover the many resources the University of Maryland, College Park has to offer. Her professional university background includes teaching freshman composition courses at UMD and supporting academic growth in the University’s athletic department. She is no stranger to UMD’s Pre-College Programs and has been a student and teaching assistant with Terp Young Scholars. Lenaya earned her B.A. in English Literature at UMD and will complete her M.A. in the spring. She is excited for a great summer with Terp Discovery!

Chris Colclough, Program Assistant: Chris is currently pursuing a Master's degree in English Literature. His background includes working within the Office of Resident Life and being a wilderness adventure guide. This will be his second year working within the Office of Extended Studies and Terp Discovery. He always enjoys the various aspects of programming to ensure an enjoyable experience for everyone who participates in these programs. He is looking forward to being a part of the program for the second summer and helping students discover University life.

Mentors: Selected UMD students serve as mentors, and work under the guidance of the professional staff. Mentors ensure safe and appropriate behavior. For commuter students, mentors greet students in the morning and hand-off students to a designated parent/guardian in the afternoon. For residential students, mentors provide supervision in the residence halls, meals, and all evening and weekend activities. Mentors live in the residence hall alongside program participants, perform nightly curfew checks, and are responsible for responding to any situation which may arise. All students are walked to and from class and daytime activities. In the classrooms and afternoon sessions, students are supervised by instructors.

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