Message from the Dean
I have learned so much from talking to students and alumni since arriving at the Merrick School of Business last August. Of course, I have even more to learn. Which leads me to share one of my personal goals for the next few years—meet as many students and alumni as possible.
At the heart of what we do is to launch professional careers.
-Murray M. Dalziel, Dean of the Merrick School of Business
So what have I learned so far that will catapult Merrick School into a nationally recognized business school?
In April 2015, University President, Kurt Schmoke, shared a few remarks at his Investiture that reflected on the founding of the University of Baltimore. These words gave me a concrete view of who we are. He quoted a line from the very first UB academic catalog, circa 1925, which in part stated that the University “was established to provide opportunities for employed men and women to obtain a practical type of college education at night.”
This profound statement, with its clear intent about offering opportunities to those who are out in the workforce, building lives and growing the city, still holds true today—with a bit of 21st century enhancements of course. But essentially the statement remains the core of who we are as an institution and a business school. We offer a broad range of opportunities to advance business knowledge. And it can be tested and used as soon as you leave the classroom.
When you add in the deep diversity of our student body and faculty, you have a formula that reflects the diversity of the modern workplace. Our rich array of full-and part-time employed students, the variety of ethnicities and nationalities, the post-traditional and traditional students, the family backgrounds and areas of expertise—all of these elements are easily quantifiable, but perhaps most important of these is our deep diversity of life experiences. It’s something that makes us truly unique.
I’ve discovered that there is a commonality among all the generations of alumni and our current students: All thrive on learning new concepts and different perspectives (that is what most universities provide) but our students and alumni value even more one simple thing: “getting things done.”
I frequently hear from students that their classroom experience (face to face or online) has enriched their educational journey and created a sense of what it is like to go to school with the people you are actually going to work with. For all students, the opportunity to learn together in a diverse environment and in reasonably small classes is something we should cherish and nurture. It sets us apart.
At the heart of what we do is to launch professional careers. For some students, we help them establish themselves. For others, it’s about the opportunity to advance. For others still, it’s about a change in careers.
The Merrick School of Business should be a nationally recognized institution. That is an aspiration that is realistic—and deserved. Baltimore is one of the few metro areas in the country without a nationally recognized business school. Business schools are integral to sustaining economic development. Our alumni and students are so embedded in the economic fabric of Baltimore; we can and are working together to help our hometown progress as a dynamic area for working and living.
Being the school that launches and develops professional careers and is the best in the nation at bringing business education to working adults should be enough to gain national recognition. But this institution has so many more attributes and themes. Some of the more notable ones are:
- Developing knowledge and applications for community and international entrepreneurship. These are areas that faculty are actively involved with in research or practice. When applied to Baltimore, they can help build the fabric of entrepreneurship in the city.
- Being a bridge for international business. A critical asset of our faculty is that more than 50 percent were born outside of the U.S., and most keep strong ties with their country of origin. Meanwhile nearly 40 percent of our students are first generation Americans, and many have deep entrepreneurial ties to their countries of birth.
- Serving as a source of professional excellence for accounting and the broader financial services industry. UB has more partners in Maryland accounting firms than any other school.
- Developing talent and information for the broader real estate industry. We have the only undergraduate real estate and economic development program in Maryland, with strong ties to the industry and a huge asset in data for the industry available within the Jacob France Institute—the School’s economic research center.
- Stimulating knowledge and applications in digital business. We have a great degree program, our B.S. in Information Systems Management and Technology, with strong ties to the industry plus faculty members who give talks around the world on some of the most prevalent issues in the industry, such as mobile technology.
Is this the sum of what we do? No. As I said, I have more to learn. I believe we all do. And that is why I would like to hear from you.
Maryland deserves more than one nationally recognized school of business. I intend that to be the Merrick School. I hope you’ll join me on the journey.
Thank you very much and I look forward to getting to know you.
Murray M. Dalziel, Ph.D. Dean, Merrick School of Business