The third annual Smith Advisory Council Day welcomed 150 alumni, employers and industry leaders to Van Munching Hall on Friday, Oct. 27. Participants came from across the country and as far as London, England. The event brings the councils together each year to evaluate the Smith School’s programs and curriculum, hear from current students and network.
The hours between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. have become the time when many workers leave the office or take a break from remote work. It’s being called the workday dead zone. Many employees use that couple of hours to do everything from beat traffic, pick up their kids from daycare, and even hit the gym. The Wall Street Journal reports workers aren’t just using this time to blow off work and relax, they’re making up the time with a third shift at night to finish off the workday.
This past summer, students in Smith’s Flex MBA program worked on consulting projects with top organizations, including Google, Major League Baseball, Allegiant Air, and the Maryland Department of Veteran Affairs. They traveled to New York, Las Vegas, and in and around Washington, D.C., to present findings to clients, who were “quite impressed,” said Roy Thomason, who organized the projects as a lecturer in Smith’s management and organization department.
“It’s moving to me that our project will in some small way impact the future of veteran care. Isn’t that what we all want in life, to leave our corner of the world a little better than we found it?”
When Dean Prabhudev Konana initiated the Office of Experiential Learning (OEL) at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business, he described its mission as “to expand and deepen existing alumni and corporate relationships to increase career success odds for students opportunities for our students to get the type of real-world, practical learning that will make them the most sought after by employers when they graduate.”
The Smith School has always known how important experiential learning is for students. These hands-on, immersive experiences and opportunities to solve real problems for real companies help them develop critical thinking skills, greater resilience, and an ability to lead the organizations of the future. Smith has offered this type of learning—both in the classroom and beyond—for years.
Students majoring in Information Systems got the opportunity to use what they’d learned throughout the undergraduate program in a culminating experiential learning senior capstone course where they built web solutions for small local businesses and worked with professionals and alumni from Deloitte and KPMG.
More Smith alumni are giving back to help current students get jobs, thanks to new efforts from the Office of Career Services and the newly launched Office of Experiential Learning.