About Us

Let us tell you a little more about us

How The BA Was Formed

The Business Academy was formed in 2020 by 6 University of Maryland alumni who graduated from Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. When reflecting on their experience at UMD, each of these founding members attribute a large portion of their success to a program called the Smith Business Academy. The alumni and former Presidents of this program and school found themselves eager to bring the mission of that program to high schools, colleges, and universities across the world. 

Our Mission

The Business Academy’s mission is to partner with high schools, colleges, and universities to develop a Business Academy chapter aimed at developing their underserved students into strong business professionals. The Business Academy will work to develop chapters that are chartered to serve as springboards to future success.

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Professional Development

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Mentorship

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Corporate and Academic Partnership

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Community Service

In order to achieve this vision, we operate as a value-driven organization. Our values are Leadership, Distinction, Tenacity, Community, and Purpose. The Business Academy works to instill these values in its members throughout the course of the program. In doing so, our members will be more than prepared to face the challenges they will encounter in their careers.

Academy Program Model

“One of my most valuable experiences in college was having a mentor that could show me the ropes.”

Core Seminars

In-person and virtual events on personal and professional development topics

  • Bi-Weekly 
  • Business Professional Environment 
  • Motivational Culture
  • Guest Speakers
  • Networking Opportunities 
  • Skill Development 

Coaching

Connecting career and personal goals with member experiences.

Sustained Excellence

Succession management model, strategic partnerships and engaging alumni programming to promote community and lifelong learning

Mentorship

Pairing alumni with undergraduate members

Social & Emotional Development

Discussions, gatherings and retreats dedicated to fostering community between chapters

Meet the Team

We’re bringing the mission of The Business Academy to high schools, colleges, and universities across the world

Executive Committee

Nahom Tekle

President

Outside Of The Business Academy: Director – County Executive Campaign

Brandon Lucas

Vice President

Outside The Business Academy: Senior Technology Consultant – PwC

Ethan Parker

Vice President

Outside The Business Academy: Management Consultant – Accenture

Jaelin Cook

Treasurer & Secretary

Outside Of The Business Academy: Senior Consultant – Deloitte

Austin Jones

Director Of Strategy & Partnerships

Outside Of The Business Academy: Strategy Consultant – Visa

Denis Alvarenga

Director Of Community Development

Outside Of The Business Academy: Sales & Trading Analyst – Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Board Advisors

Dr. Victor Mullins

Board Advisor

Outside Of The Business Academy: Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies & Diversity Officer – University of Maryland, Robert H. Smith School of Business

Melanie Ashton

Board Advisor

Outside The Business Academy: Director of Business Minor Programs – University of Maryland, Robert H. Smith School of Business 

Melanie Ashton

Board Advisor

Outside The Business Academy: Director of Business Minor Programs – University of Maryland, Robert H. Smith School of Business 

Meet the Team

We’re bringing the mission of The Business Academy to high schools, colleges, and universities across the world

Executive Committee

Nahom Tekle

President

Brandon Lucas

Vice President

Ethan Parker

Vice President

Jaelin Cook

Treasurer & Secretary

Austin Jones

Director Of Strategy & Partnerships

Denis Alvarenga

Director Of Community Development

Board Advisors

Dr. Victor Mullins

Board Advisor

Melanie Ashton

Board Advisor