In the very first University of Baltimore academic catalog circa 1925, a statement attributed to late Charles William Eliot, president of Harvard University from 1869-1909, was inserted as a way to frame what schools of commerce and business administration were tasked to do:
"I believe commerce and industry in their higher ranges to be eminently intellectual pursuits, and I know of no other intellectual calling for which a professional school is not now provided. It used to be the fashion to study medicine by cleaning the doctor’s horse and buggy, grinding his drugs and driving around with him to make his calls; and to study law by copying deeds and briefs in a lawyer’s office, and reading books taken from the lawyer’s library in the intervals of clerical labor, but the world has now learned that there is a better way of studying medicine and law; namely, by going to a professional school, where progressive, systematic instruction rapidly developed is to be had. To deny that young men [people] may be systematically trained for industry and commerce, is to assert that industry and commerce are merely imitative arts to be acquired only by seeing other people do the tricks, and then practicing them. In industry and commerce, all things are become new; new methods of preparing young men [people] for these occupations must be invented with discriminating foresight, established with prudence, and maintained with liberality."
Today this commentary still holds true—“in industry and commerce all things are becoming new.” That is why our faculty are engaged in research—we need foresight to prepare students for future roles with technologies, opportunities and challenges very different from what we all may have faced only a short decade ago.
Some of the themes that our faculty are exploring include the implications of cyber-security; risk and resilience in business; how entrepreneurs in difficult circumstances (especially in emerging countries) deal with financing their businesses; the intersection of ethics, regulation and compliance (especially in financial services); and how digital technologies are transforming the way people do business. In our Jacob France Institute, we house the Baltimore Neighborhood Indicators Alliance, a powerful source of data that community organizations, government and business can use to build policies that contribute to the economic development of Baltimore.
These and many more of the themes we explore influence how we teach. As our new mission statement points out: “Our students learn to make a positive impact from faculty who develop compelling knowledge that influences communities, businesses, professions, and scholars.”
Students choose the Merrick School of Business because it stands for value and substance. You hear that sentiment most often from our students around graduation. This spring, 148 undergraduates and 74 graduate students graduated during the University of Baltimore's 121st Commencement Exercises. Each commencement is a joyous celebration, not only for the graduates and their families, but for our faculty too. Our faculty are celebrating right along with the graduates—knowing that the fruits of their teaching will continue to incrementally impact the world around us.
I am pleased to report that for another year US News and World Report ranked our undergraduate programs as one of the top programs in their “Best Colleges” rankings. Our recently redisgned MBA, with its considerable flexibility in terms of what students choose to learn and how they learn it, is getting increased recognition. The flexibility is recognized by US News and world Report, which ranked our online MBA as one of the top programs in their “Best Online” category this year. Similarly, CEO Magazine, ranked our Online MBA #26 in their global rankings
Again, quoting from our new mission, we will continue to “use our urban education hub to offer practical, career-minded and globally engaged business education that inspires professional and entrepreneurial growth.” What a great academic year is a head for the Merrick School of Business.
Murray M. Dalziel, Ph.D.
Dean, Merrick School of Business