United States Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland to deliver the Convocation Keynote address

Senator Ben CardinThe University of Maryland School of Social Work is honored to have United States Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland deliver the Convocation Keynote address during its graduation ceremony on May 17, 2024.  

A third-generation Marylander, Senator Ben Cardin has been a national leader on health care, retirement security, the environment, and fiscal issues. He believes government has a duty to improve the lives of all Americans. From fighting efforts to weaken Social Security and Medicare, to championing greater access to health care and telemental health, to making it possible for more Americans to save more for retirement, Senator Cardin is a recognized leader with a record of legislative success. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2006, where he currently serves as Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Senator Cardin also is a senior member of the Finance, Environment and Public Works, and Small Business and Entrepreneurship committees. 

In his work for civil rights and equity, Senator Cardin has sought to find a balance between protection of civil liberties and national security. He is the lead Senate sponsor of legislation to prohibit racial and religious profiling by all levels of law enforcement, restore voting rights for former felons, and remove the deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. 

As a member of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Cardin is committed to preserving and strengthening Medicare and Social Security and has worked to extend the life of the Medicare Trust Fund by at least a decade.  In the Senate, he also led the fight to eliminate co-pays for Medicare preventive services and to include free annual wellness checkups for Medicare patients in the health care reform law.  He also has fought to lift the cap on physical and outpatient therapy and to make sure that Medicare patients can participate in often life-saving clinical trials. This Congress, one of his priorities has been securing the role of telehealth in federal health programs, introducing a bill that would eliminate in-person requirements to lower the barriers to care for those seeking treatment for mental health conditions. 

From 1987-2006, Cardin served in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he often was a voice for our most vulnerable citizens. While in the House, he introduced legislation to help those leaving public assistance get the job training, education and childcare they need to work their way out of poverty. In 1999, his bill to increase education and support services for foster care children between ages 18 and 21 was signed into law. In the House, he also authored bills to expand child support, hold fathers accountable, improve the welfare-to-work program and increase the childcare tax credit. For his work on strengthening the foster care program and helping families, Cardin has received awards from Casey Family Services, the Child Welfare League of America, and the National PTA. 

From 1967-1986, Senator Cardin was a member of the Maryland House of Delegates, serving as Speaker from 1979-1986. He is a proud graduate of the University of Maryland School of Law. 

The School's graduation ceremony takes place at 1:00 PM at theLyric Opera House. 

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