Smith School Store Open for Business
Students at the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, are
getting first-hand experience in becoming entrepreneurs by working and running the
Kevin Kirk, a junior supply chain and finance major at the Smith School, said
working for the Smith Store is great because “you get to really learn how the run
a business. It’s really cool to learn, but isn’t without bumps.”
Located on the first floor of Van Munching Hall in room 1409, the student-run
Smith Store sells Smith School apparel and other Smith brand goods.
“If someone wants to proudly wear our name, this would allow them to do it,”
Originally, the Smith Store started as a program of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship
and was run by MBA students. Later it was passed down to undergraduate students.
Working for the Smith Store is like running your own business, with students making
the bulk of the decisions about what goods to sell, pricing, display, etc., Kirk
explained, adding that the Smith Store used to be located on the third floor, where
many students didn’t know of its existence.
“We took a step up while we moved down a couple of floors,” Kirk said about the
location switch from the third to first floor, where the Smith Store is currently
located. In addition, the Smith Store now has a grid wall and display cases, making
it more eye-catching and attractive to the students, faculty and staff who stop
by to shop.
Recently, the Smith Store added an Under Armour Line to its collection. This
line of apparel has been added to the Smith Store’s Web site, www.ShopSmithStore.com.
With the launch of the new line, the Smith Store is hoping to give its apparel even
more of a connection to the University of Maryland, College Park and the Smith School.
The creator of Under Armour, Kevin Plank, launched Under Armour (NYSE: UA) in
1995 during his time as a student at the Smith School, and as special teams captain
for the Terps’ football team. Tired of repeatedly changing the cotton T-shirt under
his jersey as it became wet and heavy during the course of a game, Plank set out
to develop a next generation shirt that would remain drier and lighter and consistently
perform under the most extreme conditions.
Plank has donated many generous gifts to further the success of the Smith School,
including yearly contributions to hold the Cupid’s Cup Business Competition in conjunction
with the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship. Plank also contributed to the Smith
Entrepreneur Fund, a $175,000 fund dedicated to furthering the studies and skills
of students associated with the Dingman Center.
The Smith Store, according to Kirk, will now be selling Under Armour men’s and
women’s polos, jackets and tees. Plank is aware of this new line for the Smith Store,
but wasn’t a part of the launch, Kirk said.
“We were selling Columbia Jackets, but that didn’t make sense. Under Armour is
not only from the University of Maryland, but the Smith School too,” Kirk said.
Prices of the new apparel range from $27 for a women’s T-shirt to $80 for a women’s
jacket. Proceeds go back to scholarships funds and entrepreneurship competitions,
The Smith Store, in addition to its retail side, does bulk orders for other departments
on the campus. The Smith Store has made T-shirts for Greek week and for homecoming,
according to Kirk. They’ve also recently made about 10,000 totes for an office at
Kirk said the store has a variety of products, not just apparel, such as car
decals, coasters, water bottles, and thermoses – all branded with the Smith School
logo. One of the most popular items, according top Kirk, is the padfolio, which
sells for $35. He also said that a new idea for a Smith branded product is a flashdrive
and that he welcomes any new ideas from students.
The store is open from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. It is open
on Fridays when there is a tour of the Smith School scheduled.
For more information on the Smith Store, visit
www.ShopSmithStore.com or e-mail
Kevin Kirk. You can also become a fan of the Smith Store on
Jessica Bauer, Intern, Office of Marketing Communications