Merrick Engages Series Take a Look at Community Impact, Opportunities – and Threats
'Recap on the Merrick Engages Speaker Series'
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An important goal for the Merrick Engages speaker series is that the audience comes away with learning something new and insightful. Dean Murray Dalziel has been leading the conversations with notable industry professionals, semester after semester. During the 2016-17 academic year, he focused on two key areas: cyber technology and business ventures that make an impact.

Events Summary

In the fall of 2016, Rhett Hernandez, a retired U.S. Army General and the first Commander of Army Cyber Command (ARCYBER), came to campus to share his vast experience in cybersecurity. With responsibilities for the daily operations and defense of all Army networks, and, when directed, the full range of the nation’s cyberspace operations, Gen. Hernandez had the ideal background to discuss the future of this vital activity. He spoke about cybersecurity as both a business threat and an opportunity.In addition to Dean Dalziel interviewing the general,Eusebio Scornavacca, the Parsons Professor for Digital Communication, Commerce and Culture and associate professor of information technology in the Merrick School of Business, urged Gen. Hernandez to delve deeper into the business of cyber. The conversation teed up a dedicated effort by the school’s leadership to create additional specializations for the University of Baltimore’s MBA program. The program is now offering specializations in Cyber Security and Organizational Resilience, Data Analytics and Digital Business.

The spring semester’s Merrick Engages offering was all about business ventures that deliver to the community.

In February, the dean led a conversation with Eric Becker, founder of the venture capital and private equity firm Caretta, and Lane Epperson, president and CEO of HiTech Assets, a client of Caretta. The two shared their story, "How Well-Run Businesses Can Make an Impact," Which revealed that the  business model for Caretta is different than many venture capital firms, in that they invest in companies that are creating lasting value and changing the world for the better. Their client, HiTech Assets, delivers the most innovative and secure technology disposition services to leading companies around the world. Essentially, HiTech is a company that takes digital assets and sorts, wipes the data, repairs, remarkets and/or recycles digital assets, such as computers and mobile phones. In addition, the firm employs and trains people from low-income communities to help acquire solid business skills and a living wage.

View the hour-long event video on YouTube.

In April, Dean Dalziel and Amon Anderson, associate director of Acumen America, discussed the ways that venture philanthropy can make a difference in America. Acumen has invested in three areas: financial inclusion, health and workforce development. They use seed and Series A investments, follow-on capital, a network of advisers and post-investment support to invest in startups with the capacity to make both markets and government systems work better for disenfranchised communities. This will generate sustainable, long-term solutions to poverty and establish a more inclusive economy for all. Dean Dalziel and Anderson’s conversation showed that companies in Baltimore and other cities can be structured to emphasize these capabilities.

View the hour-long event video on YouTube.


Overall, this year’s Merrick Engages events were simply that: a chance for the Baltimore business community to sit back, relax, and engage in inspired conversations. Look for news about upcoming events in the series on the Merrick website.



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