Presenting educational and historical exhibitions that enrich the programs of academic departments is a primary emphasis of the Gallery. The Gallery sponsors lectures, symposia, and tours in connection with its exhibitions. Programs for students in primary and secondary schools are also be offered. In addition, exhibitions originated in the Gallery may travel to other locations.
In the context of UMBC, a research university, the Gallery serves as a crucible for the discovery of and encounter with ideas greater than any single book, object, image or concept.
Exposing students and visitors to a broad range of exhibitions and educational and public programming across a wide range of subjects, media, and aesthetic purposes is a primary goal of the Gallery.
The Gallery also seeks to increase accessibility to collections held in the Library, particularly the nationally recognized Photography Collections. Exhibitions drawn from the Photography Collections often bring to fruition research related to the holdings and result in the publication of catalogues which make valuable scholarship accessible to a wide audience.