Dr. Yam was appointed the 14th president of Notre Dame of Maryland University on July 1, 2014. Throughout her career, she has been an advocate for the essential role of a liberal arts foundation in professional education. At Notre Dame, she has led the effort to develop two five-year strategic plans, including the current Go Beyond: Vision 2025 plan; raised historic fundraising dollars; strengthened fiscal resources; significantly expanded academic programs and launched NDMU online; expanded the campus land envelope; completed three capital facility projects on campus; and attained United Nations Non-Government Organization status.
Under her leadership, NDMU launched the cutting-edge IMPRINT leadership development program for undergraduate students, Maryland’s first bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in art therapy, and the state’s first doctorate in occupational therapy program at a private university. The state also approved Notre Dame's physician assistant program — the first such program at a private university — and the University's master's degree in family and adult nurse practitioner programs.
Her service to the state and higher education is extensive. Governor Hogan appointed Dr. Yam to the Maryland Commission on Women. While on the commission, she chaired the Health & Wellness Committee for three years and led the development of the Maryland Women: A Status Report, completed in 2021. She serves on the board of directors for the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) and is the chair of the Maryland Independent Colleges and Universities Association (MICUA). Her past board positions include serving as vice chair of the Keswick Multi-Care Center, chair of the Colonial States Athletic Conference, and trustee on the board of Caroline Center. She has also mentored higher education executives through leadership development programs, including the Council of Independent Colleges.
The Daily Record named Dr. Yam one of Maryland's 2021 Most Admired CEOs and twice selected her as a Top 100 Maryland Women in 2020 and 2017.
Notre Dame is a visionary institution that has never wavered in its commitment to provide superior academic programs that are enriched by the proven value of a Catholic, liberal arts foundation.
- Dr. Yam
Dr. Yam joined Saint Peter’s College as an instructor in the Nursing department. She later served as Director of the Master of Science in Nursing program, Chairperson of the Nursing department, Associate Dean of Nursing, and Academic Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Business Administration, the first woman to hold that position in the university’s history.
Dr. Yam has been a leader in program development. She played a key role in the expansion of Saint Peter’s from a college to a university and was instrumental in the establishment of its first two doctoral programs and its Schools of Nursing and Education. She created the university’s Center for Global Learning and launched the English Language Learning and Culture Acquisition Center.
Dr. Yam began her career as a nurse and a nursing educator and remains a licensed registered nurse. Dr. Yam’s commitment to the education and preparation of health care professionals comes at particularly fortuitous moment in Notre Dame’s history of preparing thousands of nurses and a growing number of pharmacists who serve regionally, nationally and internationally.
Dr. Yam holds a Ph.D. in Nursing Science from Adelphi University, a Master of Arts and a Master of Education in Nursing Education/Adult Health from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from Mercy College. She also completed post-doctoral work at Johns Hopkins University.
Dr. Yam is married to David Yam, who is the Cytology Manager at Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, N.J. Their son, Michael, is a sports broadcast journalist.