Community / December 21, 2016

Congrats to New Smith Alumni!

On Dec. 21, 2016, over 800 students graduated from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business with PhD, MS, MBA, and BS degrees. The commencement ceremony was held at the Xfinity Center on the university’s College Park campus.

You can watch the entire ceremony online.

The keynote speaker was Richard L. Novak ’62, operating partner at Linden Capital Partners. Novak is a retired senior executive with 50 years of experience at four companies. His career has spanned health care services and consumer-packaged goods at LabCorp, GlaxoSmithKline, Bayer and Altria, where he managed both domestic and international businesses.

His speech centered on three themes: leadership, legacy and learnings. He talked about his journey from a “scrawny” quarterback on the Maryland Football Team in 1958 to his corporate executive roles. "Anything is possible. Students, set your sights high. Go for it. The world is your oyster," he said. (Start 00:36:14)

The undergraduate student speaker was Adam Greene, information systems and finance major and an award-winning place kicker for the Maryland Terrapins football team. (The Baltimore Sun wrote about him yesterday.) After graduation, Greene will be staying on at Smith to pursue the Master of Finance degree.  He gave graduates advice as they “kick-off” the next steps of their lives. “Over the years, I learned that it's not the moment itself, but how you approach the moment that defines who you are and the meaning behind the event,” he said. (Start 00:22:05)

The graduate speaker was Rahul Sood, a technical director for the federal government in the cybersecurity field who is graduating with a master’s degree in information systems. "There has never been more uncertainty in a world where everything seems so opaque. As we are on the precipice of the great unknown, like generations before us, we must humble ourselves as we embark upon this journey. We must continue to be driven, ambitious and hungry for more knowledge from wherever we can find it."  (Start 00:29:19)

Join the conversation online at #SmithGrad – Twitter: @SmithSchool – Instagram: @UMDSmithSchool.

Photos are on Facebook

For more details and highlights from previous Smith School commencement ceremonies, visit

- Alissa Arford, Office of Marketing Communications 

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Greg Muraski
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About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and flex MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, business master’s, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.

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