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UMD Robert H. Smith School of Business Named Member of Forté Foundation

Jul 07, 2014
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Smith Reinforces Commitment to Women’s Advancement in Business 

College Park, Md. – July 7, 2014 – The Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland was one of only six institutions named as 2014 sponsor of the Forté Foundation, a consortium of major corporations, business schools and non-profit organizations that champions women for leadership roles in business. 

This is the first year Forté has invited U.S.-based business schools to apply as sponsors since 2011. Smith and the other five schools officially joined the Forté community on July 1, bringing the total in the network to 48 member schools in the U.S., Canada and Europe. 

“We are committed to supporting women MBA students so it is an honor to join this group of top business schools, corporations and nonprofits that share that commitment,” said Alexander Triantis, dean of the Robert H. Smith School of Business. “Being part of this organization will help us meet our goals of attracting and advancing more women in business careers. This partnership will benefit our students and our alumnae with resources, scholarships, career opportunities and events.” 

“We are thrilled to expand our already-outstanding group of institutional sponsors with these six unique and exemplary business schools,” said Elissa Ellis Sangster, executive director of Forté Foundation. “Our value proposition has always been clear to MBA programs committed to women’s advancement, and we evaluate prospective sponsors based on numerous criteria in a competitive application process.” 

Smith joins the strong Forté network, which includes the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, Harvard Business School, London Business School and Ross Business School at the University of Michigan. Sponsor schools are selected based on their ability to expand Forté’s reach and impact with key segments of pre-MBA women, provide connections to prospective sponsor companies, and enhance Forté’s ability to reach and impact undergraduate women. Sponsor schools must add diversity to Forté Foundation in some way, so the non-profit also considers school location, size, undergraduate pipeline and programs, and a proven commitment to female leadership. 

Called to action by a landmark research study, Women and the MBA: Gateway to Opportunity, looking at why women are underrepresented in leading business schools compared with medical or law schools, Forté Foundation was founded in 2001 to address this inequity and its impact on the business landscape. Forté enables its corporate and business school sponsors to effectively reach, recruit and retain top female talent. Forté’s agenda to reach college-aged women, MBA candidates, and MBA alumnae builds on its founding commitment to increase the number of women in the early business pipeline, and creates partnerships with academic and advocacy groups, as well as its own sponsors, to attract and retain women in business careers. 

Forte Foundation

About Forté Foundation
Forté Foundation is a non-profit consortium of leading multinational corporations, top business schools in the US and abroad, and the Graduate Management Admission Council. Its mission is to launch women into fulfilling, significant careers through access to business education, opportunities and a community of successful women. Forté is the leading organization that provides a national infrastructure for women at all stages of the career continuum to access the information, scholarship support and networking connections they need to succeed in business careers. Additional information about the Forté Foundation is available online at

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 part-time MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, specialty masters, 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.