Smeal Update: March 5, 2021

Susan L. Taylor to speak as part of Smeal Diversity Enhancement Programs Speaker Series

Susan L. Taylor, founder and CEO of the National CARES Mentoring Movement and the former editor of Essence magazine, will speak virtually at 6 p.m. March 23. Taylor’s talk is part of the Smeal Office of Diversity Enhancement Programs Speaker Series. The event is free and open to everyone, but pre-registration is required.

John Liechty to speak Saturday at TEDxPSU

John Liechty, professor of marketing and statistics, will be a featured speaker Saturday at TEDxPSU. The conference is scheduled for 1-3:30 p.m. Liechty’s talk is titled “Augmented Intelligence.” Also speaking is Michael Mitole, a Smeal sophomore studying finance and economics. Mitole is a member of the Sapphire Leadership and Presidential Leadership Academy programs. Anyone interested in watching live can do so at: 

Mister Rogers Calls — Won’t you be my neighbor?

In a continued effort to increase a sense of community during these remote times, we are re-inviting you to participate in the March edition of Mister Rogers Calls. By clicking this link, you will be asked to select your affiliation within Smeal. You will then be randomly matched with another member of the Smeal Community and you both will receive a notification via email. The team members will then schedule a Zoom call for sometime within the following week, based on their availability. The only guideline for the Zoom call is that it should last about 30 minutes, and it is suggested you do not talk about work (other than a brief introduction). After this meeting, you may meet as often as you like, or participate in the next round of calls, in an effort to connect with additional members of our community. Please respond by Tuesday to participate in this round of calls. 

Smeal in the News

Penn State Smeal introducing exciting changes to marketing curriculum

As consumer habits constantly evolve, so too do the ways companies try to prevail upon those people to purchase or consume their products. To better equip Smeal students to cope in this changing landscape, the Penn State Smeal College of Business Marketing Department is making several enhancements to its curriculum. Read the story.

Registration deadline approaching for START Conference

Business leaders from a variety of companies and members of both the Penn State Smeal College of Business and greater State College communities will gather virtually on March 25 to celebrate diversity at the START Conference. Read the story.

Ask the Dean open for your questions

We share information about the college in our weekly Smeal Community Zoom sessions, but sometimes there isn’t time to discuss an issue fully. To address those topics, we’re introducing Ask the Dean. Send your questions to We’ll do our best to provide answers in a video to be included in an upcoming Smeal Update.

Do you know someone who rocks? Nominate them!

Each month the Smeal Staff Advisory Committee names a You Rock! Award recipient. You can nominate a co-worker for the You Rock! Award online.

The Smeal Community Weekly Poll

The Staff Advisory Committee, in an effort to engage the Smeal community, is conducting a weekly poll. This week's survey asks about languages. Click this link to participate. Results will be shared during next week's Smeal Community Zoom.

Next Week at Smeal

Diversity Task Force Brown Bag Lunch (Noon Wednesday)

The Smeal Diversity Task Force is sponsoring a special lunchtime presentation on housing and mortgage racial discrimination led by Brent Ambrose, Smeal professor of risk management, Smeal professor of real estate, director of the Ph.D. Program, and director of the Institute for Real Estate Studies. Guests will include Brian Allen, who earned a bachelor’s of finance in 1989 and a master’s in sport administration in 1992, and his father, Darryl Allen. Ambrose will discuss his research on the topic. The Allens will share their personal experiences with discrimination in the context of real estate. The virtual presentation can be accessed through the following Zoom link.

News of importance to faculty and staff

Penn State’s COVID-19 Dashboard shows ongoing results for all COVID-19 tests administered on campus since Dec. 19, 2020, for faculty, staff, and students.

With the conclusion of the required universal COVID-19 testing period, Penn State resumed testing of its on-campus students and employees on Monday as part of the University’s spring 2021 student testing strategy.

According to a new model created by researchers at Penn State, when healthcare workers become ill during a disease outbreak, overall case counts and mortality rates may significantly increase.