Villanova management professor Quinetta Roberson, PhD ’99, has always been fast. She won races as a University of Delaware sprinter. And later, during her Smith PhD years, she competed against undergraduates on the Terrapins intramural track team.
“It was my way of staying fit, as well as staying sane,” the Philadelphia native says. “Even today at Villanova, you can usually catch me on the track running wind sprints at some point during the week.”
Other fast activities include snowboarding, something Roberson picked up at Smith. She celebrated the completion of her PhD in similar fashion — by going skydiving. “I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie,” she says.
Roberson also has a quick mind. She skipped a couple of grades before high school and then finished undergraduate and MBA programs before turning 21. After an early start in banking, she opted for an academic career as a way of immersing herself in a learning environment.
“I love being in the library and being around students,” she says. “It gets your wheels turning. I feel like I’m always thinking, learning, getting smarter.”
She says that’s what she loves most about her job. “I get to read. I get to write. I get to teach and interact with students.”
She also gets to travel. Her first opportunity came at Smith, when professor Susan Taylor issued a challenge. “She told me that if I finished my dissertation one month early, she would take me with her to Italy,” Roberson says.
Since then she has visited more than 40 countries, including South Africa, where she returns every year to teach business basics to local entrepreneurs.
Although Villanova pays her bills, Roberson shows her Maryland pride when the two universities play each other in basketball. During the most recent matchup, Roberson wore a Wildcats hat and Terrapins sweatshirt. “Villanova has my head,” she explains. “But Maryland has my heart.”
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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.