Robert H. Smith School of Business

The Robert H. Smith School of Business (Smith School) is the business school at the University of Maryland, College Park, a public research university in College Park, Maryland. The school was named after alumnus Robert H. Smith (Accounting '50). One of 12 colleges and schools at the university's main campus, the Smith School offers programs at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.[1] It is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) to award bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees.

Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland
Smith School Logo.jpg
Parent institution
University of Maryland
DeanPrabhudev Konana
Academic staff
Location, ,
United States

38°59′15″N 76°56′24″W / 38.9875°N 76.94°W / 38.9875; -76.94Coordinates: 38°59′15″N 76°56′24″W / 38.9875°N 76.94°W / 38.9875; -76.94


20th centuryEdit

By the end of World War I in 1918, the United States had become the leading economic power in the world, and both U.S. domestic business and U.S investment in overseas operations surged.[2] The stage was set for U.S. universities to heighten focus on formal Business education. In 1921, University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) introduced an undergraduate business program within the existing Department of Economics/Business Administration that included courses in Diplomacy, Constitutional law, and Public speaking. Less than 400 students enrolled. 17 years later in 1938, UMD restructured the burgeoning business program into a separate college within the University, renamed the department to the College of Commerce, and appointed internationally recognized economist Dr. W. Mackenzie Stevens to be its first dean. By 1940 the College of Commerce undergraduate business program had earned accreditation from the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) (now internationalized under the name Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business). In 1942, new Dean J. Freeman Pyle expanded the curriculum to deliver classes on Public administration, and reflected this widened scope by renaming to the College of Business and Public Administration (BPA).[3]

When World War II broke out in 1939, many students and faculty left school to join the military, shrinking 1943 BPA enrollment to only 130 civilians.[3] After World War II ended and with the passage of the 1944 G.I. Bill to federally subsidize veteran's higher education costs,[4] BPA grew substantially in size, instituted a graduate program, and in 1947 issued its first graduate degree - a Masters in Business Administration (MBA). By 1948 enrollment had climbed back to 2,200 students.[3]

In 1961, UMD knocked down an old wooden gymnasium shed and built the new building Millard E. Tydings Hall, which was named after Maryland senator and Maryland Agricultural College (a predecessor school now rolled up into UMD) engineering alumnus "Scott" Millard E. Tydings.[5] College of Business and Public Administration (BPA) moved in and remained there into the 1990s. In 1962, the BPA's graduate MBA program became one of the first MBA programs accredited by AACSB. In 1964 women enrollment grew significantly, and after several years women became fully integrated into student networking organizations and clubs. By 1966 BPA issued its first Doctoral degree - Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), and within three years this became a PhD program. Over the next three years, BPA segmented the undergraduate business curriculum into separate disciplines such as Information Systems, Marketing, Business and Public Policy, Accounting, Organizational Behavior (now Management), and Quantitative (now Statistics) in order to better align with business practices. During the same period, BPA actively undertook initiatives to increase enrollment of women and minorities, such as recruiting at historically black colleges and universities and providing targeted financial aid.[3]

In 1973, the Business Administration department within BPA was spun off as a standalone college called College of Business and Management (CBM), with professional jazz saxophone player Rudolph "Rudy" P. Lamone appointed to begin his nineteen-year tenure as Dean. Two years later, the part-time evening MBA programs catering to working professionals were launched at both CBM's main campus in College Park, Maryland and CBM's secondary campus north west in Shady Grove, Maryland. In 1978, CBM instituted its own undergraduate admissions program to enable more selective student recruitment. In 1979, the school offered its first Master of Science (MS) degrees, including an MS in the newly added discipline Finance.[3]

In 1987, CBM launched a pioneering entrepreneurship incubator called Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship, which was named after donor Michael D. Dingman, the founder of Signal Corporation (later merged into AlliedSignal, and then into Honeywell).[3]

In 1993, CBM consolidated from Tydings Hall and other College Park locations into the newly constructed Van Munching Hall on the College Park campus, which building was named after alumnus donor Leo Van Munching, Jr., the president of a New York City company that imported Heineken beer. The same year, the College of Business and Management Foundation (CBMF) infused $250,000 into a student-run investment management fund named The Terrapin Fund. In 1995, CBM was renamed to the Maryland Business School (MBS). In 1996, MBS reached into Europe for the first time by partnering with the University of Łódź to deliver a Management Education program in Lodz Poland. Also in 1996, the school augmented its MBA program with an experiential learning module (ELM) wherein the school suspends all activities in order to focus on Ethics. In 1999, The Terrapin Fund was renamed to the Mayer Fund in honor of alumnus donor William Daniel Mayer.[3]

In the mid 1990s, groundbreaking online marketplace platforms and e-commerce payment systems such as (1995), eBay (1995), and PayPal (1998) were launched.[6] In 1998, the school recognized the growing role of information technology by adding new MBA concentrations such as Telecommunication, Technology management, Supply Chain and Logistics Management, and Electronic commerce. The same year, the business school was renamed to Robert H. Smith School of Business in honor of alumnus donor Robert H. Smith (RHS), who was the real estate developer behind building Crystal City complex in Arlington County, Virginia. One year later, RHS extended its part-time evening MBA program to a new Baltimore campus. Also in 1999, a second donation from alumnus Leo Van Munching Jr. was used to begin an expansion that would ultimately double the size of Van Munching Hall.[3]

21st centuryEdit

The Smith School began 2000 by extending the part-time, evening MBA program to a 3rd campus in Washington, D.C. Two years later RHS completed the expansion of Van Munching Hall, and RHS was able to consolidate all undergraduate and graduate school students into a single building. In 2003, the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship helped launch a public venture capital fund for fledgling mid-Atlantic companies called the New Markets Growth Fund (NMGF). In 2003, the Smith School added its executive MBA (EMBA) program to the College Park campus curriculum, and made its first inroads into Asia by developing and teaching the EMBA curriculum in Beijing, China in partnership with the hosting University of International Business and Economics. In 2006 the college instituted a graduate Master of Business in Accounting program, in part to satisfy increased industry demand for audit professionals due to the 2002 U.S. Sarbanes-Oxley Act. The same year, the Smith School launched the Lemma Senbet Fund student-run investment management fund for undergraduate Finance students starting with an initial capital infusion of $50,000. In 2009, Smith added another Master of Science (MS) business degree with a concentration in Finance.[3]

In the 2000s, most major universities began to add web-based ("online") courses to their curriculum.[7] In 2013, the Smith School created its first online degree program, which culminates in an MBA.[3]


The Robert H. Smith School of Business is a part of the University of Maryland, located principally in College Park, MD, just northeast of Washington, D.C. The school also has a presence at Shady Grove, Baltimore, as well as in the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C. The Smith School offers an executive MBA program in Beijing, China.


The Smith School offers programs at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, including Bachelor's degrees, Master's degree, and PhDs. Degrees are offered in traditional business school majors such as Accounting and Finance.[1] However, for certain concentrations often offered by standalone business colleges (e.g., Economics), University of Maryland (UMD) instead offers those programs and associated degrees in a different sister school within the university.


  • Accounting & Information Assurance
  • Decision, Operations & Information Technologies
  • Finance
  • Logistics, Business & Public Policy (includes Supply Chain Management)
  • Management & Organization
  • Marketing



The Smith School's strengths in both academics and research are reflected in its rankings and other accolades. In 2011, Financial Times ranked the school's full-time MBA program #18 in the nation.

Notable alumniEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "UMD Report of Enrollment by Major". College Park, Maryland, USA: University of Maryland: April 20, 2018. Retrieved April 24, 2018. 
  2. ^ "The Making of a Nation". 26 Federal Plaza, New York City, NY, USA: VOA Learning English. July 12, 2006. Retrieved December 3, 2018.CS1 maint: location (link) 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Robert H. Smith School of Business History". College Park, Maryland, USA: University of Maryland. June 28, 2013. Retrieved December 3, 2018. 
  4. ^ "Educational Leadership for the 21st Century". 5205 Prospect Road, San Jose, CA 95129: National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education. May 25, 2006. Retrieved December 3, 2018.CS1 maint: location (link) 
  5. ^ "Maryland Agricultural College - College Park, MD". 837 N 34th Street, Seattle, WA 98103: Groundspeak September 1, 2018. Retrieved December 3, 2018.CS1 maint: location (link) 
  6. ^ "From Storefronts to Search Engines: A History of E-Commerce". Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA: Concordia University. July 28, 2016. Retrieved December 3, 2018. 
  7. ^ "Getting Connected: A Brief History of Online Education". Lexington, Tennessee, USA: Online Schools Center. August 16, 2015. Retrieved December 3, 2018. 
  8. ^ "Albert "Pete" Kyle". Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland. Retrieved 2019-09-23.
  9. ^ "Our Team of Leaders". Arlington Asset Investment Corp. Retrieved October 6, 2010.
  10. ^ "OUR NOTABLE ALUMNI". University of Maryland. Retrieved April 28, 2019.

External linksEdit