Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion at Smith

Greetings Smith Community.

A THRIVING environment at the Robert H. Smith School of Business allows us to:
Appreciate Other Cultures
Assume Positive Intent until Otherwise Noted
Be an Active and Contributing Member of the Smith Community
Be Confident in our abilities to…(you fill in the blank)
Be Heard
Be Respected
Be Understood
Be Valued
Celebrate
Connect
Create a Steady Flow of Diversity Talent into Undergraduate, Graduate, and Ph.D. Programs
Create a Steady Flow of Diversity Talent among Faculty and Staff
Disagree Civilly
Fundamentally Disagree without Being Labeled or Judged
Own All Aspects of Who We Are
Subscribe to the "Service-Before-Self" Motto

A THRIVING environment at the Robert H. Smith School of Business is:
Accessible
Committed
Consistent
Elevating Faculty and Staff and Students
Engaging All Populations
Listening and Empathizing

 

Spring 2019
February February is Black History Month in the United States and Canada. Since 1976, the month has been designated to remember the contributions of people of the African Diaspora.
February Housekeeping with Women's Empowerment Institute (WEI)
WEI leadership will communicate expectations to new members of Cohort Two and past Cohort One members, who are now mentors. This will also serve as an opportunity for the women to get to know each other better.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
February Women's Empowerment Institute Presents First Impressions
An invited guest speaker will discuss the importance of personal brand and making a good first impression. Topics will include proper attire, awareness of both verbal and body language and networking.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
February 7 Being Black in the World of Entertainment Business
Hosted by Victor C. Mullins | Thursday, February 7 from 7-8 p.m.
Refreshments Served from 6:30-7 p.m.| Van Munching Hall, Room 1518
Victor C. Mullins facilitates a conversation w/ current Smith Executive MBA Student, K.J. Hughes, to learn how to navigate uncharted territory in entertainment. He received a BS from Smith in 2014. He founded multiple ventures, including Relentless Management Group, a business management firm for high net worth individuals, specifically entertainers and athletes in the NBA, NHL, MLB, and NFL. He co-founded Sons of Life, Inc., a not-for-profit organization which focuses on providing leadership, resources, & development to children of incarcerated parents.
February 12 Behind the Runway: Being a Black Fashion Stylist
Hosted by Victor C. Mullins | Tuesday, February 12 from 7-8 p.m.
Refreshments Served from 6:30-7 p.m. | Van Munching Hall, Room 1511
Victor C. Mullins chats with Smith Alumna, Brittany McCoy, to explore her day-to-day life as a fashion stylist. McCoy is CEO of the Brittany Christina Collection, a Ready-To-Wear (RTW) brand that specializes in Fashion-Forward Work Attire For Career-Driven Women. She has 10+ years of experience in fashion and retail. She’s launched her first brand, Dynasty By Brittany. She’s created a fashion nonprofit organization and founded the 1st Annual Fashion Week on the campus of UMD. McCoy has been featured in several fashion events including DC Fashion Week and New York Fashion Week. McCoy is a graduate of the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland.
February 14 The Purpose Project | WATCH VIDEO
The work in front of us will call upon our deepest sense of self and our deepest sense of one another. Perhaps the most significant way to understand each other’s lives and work is to find out more about our respective senses of purpose. The concept of purpose is hard to grasp and the formal definition lacks luster: “a person’s sense of resolve or determination,” but the vibrancy of purpose starts to pulse when you think about living “on purpose.” Active purpose connects an acute awareness of your own talent, with an inspiration to apply that talent toward an ideal that matters to you from the inside out. To begin our work together as a committee, we will launch The Purpose Project, a pilot initiative to foster community and conversation and create a space for deeper and shared understanding of diversity.
Contact Sherri Campbell at scampbell@rhsmith.umd.edu and Patricia Reich at plreich@rhsmith.umd.edu.
February 20 Being Black in Venture Capital
Wednesday, February 20 from 7-8 p.m.
Refreshments Served from 6:30-7 p.m. | Van Munching Hall, Room 1518
Victor C. Mullins facilitates a dialogue with Stanley T. Smith to learn more about what it takes to land a career in venture capital! Stan joins the University of Maryland as a venture investment manager, which is a dual appointment between UM Ventures and the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship. Prior to joining Maryland, Smith served as a venture investor for Syncom Venture Partners, where he helped to invest capital from a $275 million multi-stage media and communications venture capital fund. In addition, Smith has more than 15 years of experience in business development, mergers and acquisitions, strategic planning, and investment banking for companies including Yahoo!, Overture, Universal Studios, and Merrill Lynch.
February 28 Being Black with MILK & HONEY
Thursday, February 28 from 7-8 p.m.
Enjoy Milk & Honey from 6:30-7 p.m. | Van Munching Hall, Room 1511
Victor C. Mullins facilitates a dialogue with Monique Rose Simms, Co-Owner and Managing Partner, Milk & Honey. With 20 years of experience in the restaurant/bar business, Monique knows her stuff. As co-owner of the successful Milk & Honey Cafe brand (Milked LLC), she has an uncanny attention to detail and high standards in terms of the quality of food and service. This mindset carries over to her new business venture, Catch 22. Monique possesses a strong work ethic and is a hands-on manager when it comes to every aspect of the business. From pricing to menu options, Monique is a strategic thinker and the perfect balance for Chef Sammy’s no-nonsense persona.
March March is Women’s History Month. Started in 1987, Women’s History Month recognizes all women for their valuable contributions to history and society.
March Bradford Banquet
The Bradford Banquet is the marquee event of the Black and Hispanic MBA Associations that honors the legacy of one of Smith’s former deans and finance chair - William Bradford - and celebrates the diversity at Smith.
Contact Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu.
March Diversity Open House for African American and Latinx Admitted Students
Contact Jeanette Snider at jsnider@rhsmith.umd.edu.
March Women's Empowerment Institute Executive Presence
The women will receive a presentation on how to build an executive presence through communication and appearance.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
March WEI Feedback
WEI members will learn how to give and receive feedback in a variety of situations.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
March 11
1-4 p.m.
The Purpose Project | WATCH VIDEO
The work in front of us will call upon our deepest sense of self and our deepest sense of one another. Perhaps the most significant way to understand each other’s lives and work is to find out more about our respective senses of purpose. The concept of purpose is hard to grasp and the formal definition lacks luster: “a person’s sense of resolve or determination,” but the vibrancy of purpose starts to pulse when you think about living “on purpose.” Active purpose connects an acute awareness of your own talent, with an inspiration to apply that talent toward an ideal that matters to you from the inside out. To begin our work together as a committee, we will launch The Purpose Project, a pilot initiative to foster community and conversation and create a space for deeper and shared understanding of diversity.
Contact Sherri Campbell at scampbell@rhsmith.umd.edu and Patricia Reich at plreich@rhsmith.umd.edu.
April April is Celebrate Diversity Month, started in 2004 to recognize and honor the diversity surrounding us all. By celebrating differences and similarities during this month, organizers hope that people will get a deeper understanding of each other.
April WEI Presents Candid Conversations
A panel of recent graduates will be invited to give a dialogue on their experiences in the workplace. Topics will include workplace politics, microaggressions, and sexual harassment.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
April Smith Business Academy Presents Values, Ethics and Authenticity
An invited guest speaker will discuss the importance of sticking to one's values in the workplace. Advice will also be given on how to remain confident in your decision when faced with a challenging dilemma.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
April 2 Dedication 2 Community
The University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business will host our third Dedication To Community (D2C), an international forum for the exchange of ideas in business and society. The purpose of the tour is to empower all generations in business, bringing them out from behind traditional means of learning by encouraging them to interact with successful executives in a real-time, exciting and in-person dialogue. It is not just our responsibility, but rather, it is our privilege to address the issues of corporate, academic and social inclusion in a compassionate and robust manner. This year's theme will center around the concept of Listening Beautifully - the road to Reconciliation.
Contact Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu.
April 2
1-4 p.m.
The Purpose Project | WATCH VIDEO
The work in front of us will call upon our deepest sense of self and our deepest sense of one another. Perhaps the most significant way to understand each other’s lives and work is to find out more about our respective senses of purpose. The concept of purpose is hard to grasp and the formal definition lacks luster: “a person’s sense of resolve or determination,” but the vibrancy of purpose starts to pulse when you think about living “on purpose.” Active purpose connects an acute awareness of your own talent, with an inspiration to apply that talent toward an ideal that matters to you from the inside out. To begin our work together as a committee, we will launch The Purpose Project, a pilot initiative to foster community and conversation and create a space for deeper and shared understanding of diversity.
Contact Sherri Campbell at scampbell@rhsmith.umd.edu and Patricia Reich at plreich@rhsmith.umd.edu.
April 19 Prince George's High School Case Competition
Each year, the Smith Undergraduate Program partners with the Omega Theta chapter of Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity to sponsor a case competition compromised of students from our local Prince George’s County high schools. This is an invitation-only event, and we look forward to hosting more talented students in April 2019. For more information about the Prince George’s High School Case Competition, please contact Jeanette Snider at jsnider@rhsmith.umd.edu.
April 26 Smith Business Academy Men of Distinction Summit for African American and Latino Men
250+ High School and College men will gather in Van Munching Hall to build upon a community of support and empowerment for Black and Latino men while creating unique networking opportunities with alumni, current students, and prospective high school students.
Contact Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu.
May WEI Reflection
This will be a semester wrap-up, where the women will review the topics covered during the spring semester, as well as touch on other events in the WEI community (WEI Talks, Joint Meetings with SBA, Community Service Events, etc.). Cohort Two will also give their feedback on topics they would like to discuss in the fall.
Contact Melanie Ashton at melanie_ashton@rhsmith.umd.edu or Victor Mullins at vmullins@rhsmith.umd.edu for more information.
May 9
1-4 p.m.
The Purpose Project | WATCH VIDEO
The work in front of us will call upon our deepest sense of self and our deepest sense of one another. Perhaps the most significant way to understand each other’s lives and work is to find out more about our respective senses of purpose. The concept of purpose is hard to grasp and the formal definition lacks luster: “a person’s sense of resolve or determination,” but the vibrancy of purpose starts to pulse when you think about living “on purpose.” Active purpose connects an acute awareness of your own talent, with an inspiration to apply that talent toward an ideal that matters to you from the inside out. To begin our work together as a committee, we will launch The Purpose Project, a pilot initiative to foster community and conversation and create a space for deeper and shared understanding of diversity.
Contact Sherri Campbell at scampbell@rhsmith.umd.edu and Patricia Reich at plreich@rhsmith.umd.edu.

Concluded Events

Summer 2018
June June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, established to recognize the impact that gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals have had on the world. LGBT groups celebrate this special time with pride parades, picnics, parties, memorials for those lost to hate crimes and HIV/AIDS, and other group gatherings. The last Sunday in June is Gay Pride Day.
June 23 College Access Conference
Victor Mullins and team visit with prospective African American and Latino students.
Sponsored by Undergraduate Admissions, University of Maryland.
July 15-17 Snider Enterprise and Leadership Fellows Program
Smith summer business programs are living-learning, immersive experiences aimed to enhance students’ understanding of business, create global awareness on pertinent topics and develop leadership skills. Two-week summer program designed for rising 11th and 12th graders to explore entrepreneurship and business foundations through reality-based learning exercises.
July 15-17 Smith Sports and Entertainment Business Program
Smith summer business programs are living-learning, immersive experiences aimed to enhance students’ understanding of business, create global awareness on pertinent topics and develop leadership skills. Two-week summer program designed for rising 10th, 11th and 12th graders to introduce students to careers in the sports and entertainment industries while focusing on management, law, marketing and leadership.
August Diversity Training for MBA Students
Victor Mullins facilitates training for newly admitted MBA students.
August Diversity Training for Masters Students
Victor Mullins facilitates training for newly admitted MBA students.
August 21 Diversity Open House for African American and Latino Admitted Students
Victor Mullins and the Smith undergraduate staff host an intimate gathering for newly admitted diversity freshmen and transfers and current diversity students. This is a very special event.
Fall 2018
September From September 15 to October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month. This month corresponds with Mexican Independence Day, which is celebrated on September 16 and recognizes the revolution in 1810 that ended Spanish dictatorship.
September 6 Women's Empowerment Institute (WEI) Fall Interest Meeting
The first meeting of the semester serves as both an interest meeting for prospective members and a housekeeping meeting for the women of Cohort One. The executive board (C-Suite) offers a presentation about the mission of the Women’s Empowerment Institute, reminds Cohort One of expectations, and allows members to catch up from summer break.
September 6 Smith Business Academy Interest Meeting/Resume Review
This meeting offers an overview of the Smith Business Academy.
September 7 An evening with Melanie Burke
Victor Mullins and Melanie Burke host 5-year reunion with master lesson surrounding diversity, inclusion, listening, and values.
September 8 Masterclass with Melanie Burke
Victor Mullins and Melanie Burke host 5-year reunion with master lesson surrounding diversity, inclusion, listening, and values.
September 9 National Museum of African History and Culture Visit
Victor Mullins and Melanie Burke host 5-year reunion with master lesson surrounding diversity, inclusion, listening, and values.
September 10 Smith Community Discussion on InclusionREAD HIGHLIGHTS
September 13 Smith Business Academy's Networking Seminar
Members will learn the essentials of networking and career fair advice.
September 13 The Purpose Project
The work in front of us will call upon our deepest sense of self and our deepest sense of one another. Perhaps the most significant way to understand each other’s lives and work is to find out more about our respective senses of purpose. The concept of purpose is hard to grasp and the formal definition lacks luster: “a person’s sense of resolve or determination,” but the vibrancy of purpose starts to pulse when you think about living “on purpose.” Active purpose connects an acute awareness of your own talent, with an inspiration to apply that talent toward an ideal that matters to you from the inside out. To begin our work together as a committee, we will launch The Purpose Project, a pilot initiative to foster community and conversation and create a space for deeper and shared understanding of diversity.
September 18 Victor Mullins and full-time MBA students discuss diversity & inclusion at Smith.
September 20 Victor Mullins and Lun Chang meet Smith undergraduate international students to discuss professional development.
September 20 WEI Presents "Negotiations"
Guest speaker, Adrienne Cobb, Freddie Mac Systems Analyst, offers a presentation on the importance of women negotiating and shared tips on how to negotiate effectively.
September 27 Smith Business Academy's LinkedIn Workshop and SEO Recruiting
An SEO representative offers insight and guidance on opportunities alongside career tips for success. Members will also learn how to master LinkedIn.
Fall Series Smith Business Academy for African American and Latino Men
The mission of the Business Academy at Smith is to develop minority males professionally, socially and academically. In this type of environment, students are trained to develop a strong personal brand, sharpen communication skills, attain and manage opportunities for professional development, raise awareness for the significance of minorities in Business, and excel academically. This is a program where you walk in as a man and leave as a man of distinction.
Fall Series Women's Empowerment Insitute for African American and Latina Women
The Women's Empowerment Institute seeks to empower women from underrepresented populations within the Robert H. Smith School of Business to be successful personally and professionally. We do this by connecting members with high profile business leaders and experiential learning that will equip them with the business acumen necessary to succeed in a professional setting. We also inspire young women to be confident in their ability to be a leader by creating an environment of trust where transparent feedback and experiences as underrepresented women will be shared and supported.
October October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. This observance was launched in 1945 when Congress declared the first week in October as “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1998, the week was extended to a month and renamed. The annual event draws attention to employment barriers that still need to be addressed. October is also LGBT History Month, a U.S. observance started in 1994 to recognize lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history and the history of the gay rights movement.
October 4 Women's Empowerment Institute Seminar on Confident Decision Making
Members received advice on skills to navigate difficult decisions and how to make decisions fearlessly. Linda Allen, Prince George’s County Treasurer, serves as the guest speaker for the week’s topic.
October 11 Smith Business Academy Presents EY Panel and Discussion
This forum offers an intimate setting for the members to learn from seasoned professionals at EY. Open discussion and Q&A session.
October 18 "WEI Want to Know You”
This meeting serves as an opportunity for the women of WEI to network with our new faculty leaders, Melanie Ashton, and Victor Mullins. During the meeting, members are able to get to know the leaders better and communicate expectations for the Women’s Empowerment Institute.
November November is National Native American Heritage Month, which celebrates the history and contributions of Native Americans.
November 1 Women's Empowerment Institute Feedback Session
Members are presented with key skills in giving and receiving feedback. Guest speaker, Sherika Expo, Chief People Officer of the United States Digital Service (USDS), offers the cohort with a guide of giving feedback and allows them to practice scenarios with each other.
November 1 Merkle Diversity Dialogue
Merkle Partners and Dean Mullins discuss value proposition with African American and Latino UG Smith students.
November 6 Women's Empowerment Institute Presents "Boss(y): Navigating Negative Stereotypes as Female Business Leaders (WEI Talk)"
This WEI Talk is open to the entire Smith and UMD community, during which two members from Cohort One facilitate a discussion on ways to combat negative stereotypes in the business world. Members utilize the thought leadership learned from the program thus far to guide the presentation. Read highlights.
November 8-9 SmithSTART One community seminar with Victor Mullins and the class of 2022 to discuss the importance of framing diversity and inclusion for a true value proposition.
November 12-16 International Education Week
International Education Week is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Education “to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences.” The Center for Global Business (CGB) will host a week of activities to recognize the global mindset, activities, research, and global footprint of the Smith School from November 12–16, 2018.
November 15 Women's Empowerment Institute's Community Service & Entrepreneurship
Founder and CEO of Noble Uprising and recent UMD graduate, Audrey Awasom presents on the importance of community service and the steps she took to start her own non-profit organization, Noble Uprising.
November 15 Smith Business Academy Presents Accenture Case Study and Finding a Mentor
This seminar speaks on the transition from college to full-time work and provides insight into federal consulting. Offers members a case study to work through and present.
November 26–February 1 Smith Celebrates Holidays from Around the World
We are pleased to announce a new initiative “Smith Celebrates…” that we will implement throughout the year starting with “Smith Celebrates…Holidays from Around the World”. A group of Smith offices, staff, and students have been meeting and planning to implement this new ongoing tradition of Smith Celebrates! For our first year, we will launch phase 1 and the Smith School will be promoting and celebrating 13 international holidays that are traditionally celebrated between December and March. Moving forward for future years we will continue to add and expand our master holiday calendar to include holidays celebrated January through December and we will need everyone’s feedback and input! The kick-off event for this year will be “Smith Celebrates…Holiday Spirit!” that will begin with winter décor installed throughout Van Munching Hall from November 26, 2018, through February 1, 2019. In addition, an official website has been created and will include a listing of the holidays with brief descriptions.
November 29 Dynamics of Men and Women in the Workplace with Smith Business Academy and Women's Empowerment Institute
Executive leaders of SBA and WEI present on the ways men and women of color can support each other in the workplace. This serves as a teaching moment and opportunity to discuss topics like barriers to gender equality, relationships, and sexual harassment in the workplace.
November 30 Future Women in Business
2018 marks the 6th Annual Future Women in Business Conference. Since the inception of the conference in 2013, each year the Office of Undergraduate programs invites over 250 local high school women in Montgomery, Prince Georges, Howard, Ann Arundel and surrounding counties in the state of Maryland to embrace the endless possibilities available through business education. High School women grades 10-12 are invited to engage in a day of academic exploration and self-empowerment.
November 30 MBA Diversity and Inclusion Symposium
Victor Mullins will meet newly admitted MBA students and facilitate a dialogue on diversity and inclusion at Smith.
December 5 Traveling Holiday Social & Open House
We are pleased to announce a new initiative “Smith Celebrates…” that we will implement throughout the year starting with “Smith Celebrates…Holidays from Around the World”. A group of Smith offices, staff, and students have been meeting and planning to implement this new ongoing tradition of Smith Celebrates! For our first year, we will launch phase 1 and the Smith School will be promoting and celebrating 13 international holidays that are traditionally celebrated between December and March. Moving forward for future years we will continue to add and expand our master holiday calendar to include holidays celebrated January through December and we will need everyone’s feedback and input! The kick-off event for this year will be “Smith Celebrates…Holiday Spirit!” that will begin with winter décor installed throughout Van Munching Hall from November 26, 2018, through February 1, 2019. In addition, an official website has been created and will include a listing of the holidays with brief descriptions.
December 6 End of Year Celebration of the Women's Empowerment Institute
This inspirational event allows members of Cohort One to reflect and celebrate WEI’s successful first year. Both members and leaders were able to share how WEI has impacted their lives.
December 7 Celebratory Dinner & Reflections of the Smith Business Academy
This inspirational event allows members to celebrate their accomplishments and close out the semester. Also, members will be given the opportunity to showcase what they have learned throughout the semester through reflection testimonies.
December 7 Women's Empowerment Institute Presents Dress for Success Workshop with Noble Uprising
WEI hosts a “Dress for Success” workshop for the clients of the non-profit organization, Noble Uprising. Clients are comprised of women experiencing homelessness who are seeking job opportunities.
Winter 2019
January 5–19 UMD-Winter: South Africa: Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Contemporary South African Context (BMGT)
The time in Cape Town will inspire students’ academically, professionally and personally by immersing them in the field of social innovation. The course includes visits to locally owned companies such as Bo-Kaap, Macassar Pottery and Hangberg Community. Also included are thought-provoking tours of Robben Island, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the former maximum-security prison where the late Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years. In Langa Township, students will learn the sobering history of apartheid and hear stories of rising above their history to improve their livelihoods and local infrastructure for themselves and their fellow countrymen from residents of the oldest Black township in Cape Town. Students will be challenged to design creative, sustainable processes towards social change using multiple learning strategies. Students will develop a firsthand toolkit for innovative ideas through the SyNovation workshop. By the end of the course, students will be able to articulate their own definition and approach to social entrepreneurship and innovation and will have begun to develop the concepts, mindsets, skills, and relationships that will result in becoming effective life-long social innovators. Additional edu-tourism activities include a trip up Table Mountain, visit the V&A Waterfront and Aquila Game Drive.