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Montgomery College Student Success Stories

Macklin Scholars Gain Real-World Business Experience
Montgomery College Today, Spring '03

Huang DuongMontgomery College’s Macklin Scholars -- sophomore honors business students -- recognize opportunity when it comes their way, even if it comes at the expense of their limited down time.

As interns at area corporations, Macklin Scholars learn valuable lessons about employer expectations, job performance, employee behavior, corporate cultures, and commuting as they try out careers in their declared majors and “beef up”their resumes. Meanwhile, back on campus, their business professors garner feedback about workplace and employer needs, which help them tailor programs to the changing needs of employers. As a Macklin intern from November 2001 through May 2002, Huang Duong (’02) worked 15-20 hours a week at Ernst & Young assisting seven project managers in tax development, where he helped develop tax solutions for clients. “Because of the different tax jurisdictions of companies located in different states, it was very technical—to get their tax bracket down.” At the same time, he carried a 15-credit-hour load at the College, and held a 10-hour-a-week job as a service learning coordinator in the Student Life Office at the Takoma Park Campus. “Some days, I commuted by car from my home in Springbrook, near the Silver Spring/D.C. border, to the Takoma Park Campus, then down to Dupont Circle in the District to work at Ernst & Young. Then I looped back out to Rockville for an evening class before going home to study.” On occasion, Duong took work home to meet project deadlines, though he said classes and grades remained top priorities.

Duong graduated from Montgomery College and currently attends the top-ranked Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland as a finance major. He changed his major from accounting as a direct result of his experience at Ernst & Young. Initially funded through an endowment by Gordon and Marilyn Macklin in 1998, the Macklin Business Institute honors program parallels those offered at the nation’s top four-year business schools, but at a substantially lower cost. Sophomore-year business students selected for the program participate in business honors courses, a mandatory weekly seminar, and mentoring by both a faculty member and a corporate executive. Business internships and scholarship support are also available.

In a Class of Their Own
Macklin graduates continue to be top performers as transfer students, a clear indication of the program’s success. Many Macklin students transfer to the prestigious Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland—a fact MBI Director Jeffrey Schwartz and Smith School Associate Dean Patricia Cleveland presented at the American Association
of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) annual conference in St. Louis. Schwartz and Cleveland shared quantifiable data from their joint program offerings and articulation agreements with their peers to dispel myths about community college students’ abilities to compete at selective institutions.