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ScOObydoo 08-27-2004 08:46 AM

Maryland Business School To Give Blackberry Devices To MBAs

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The University of Maryland business school plans to give Blackberry wireless devices to all full-time MBA students this fall, an effort to make students technologically saavy and aware that a key to business is being able to access people and information at all times.

With the handheld Blackberry, made by Nextel, students will be able to access e-mail, use the Internet, check calendars and use the equipment's walkie-talkie function.

In the future, the business school plans to allow students to use the devices to get course assignments, access their grades and obtain other school information.

The school has already given a Blackberry to first-year students and second-year MBAs will get their devices next week. Students will get to keep the them when they leave.

The cost, which the university did not disclose, was covered by a gift from Nextel and business school funds.

What do you think of this idea?

JE$U$ 08-27-2004 09:38 AM

I think it's a great idea - it help teach them about how life in the real business world will be. As much as I love my BB, the fact that I am always wired and essentially 'open for business' 24/7 does take some getting used to.

At my business school we all had wi-fi enabled computers (with 802.11b covering most of our section of the campus), many assignments involved posting on bulletin boards/chat areas, projects were handed out online, etc. It was a great way for those who didn't really know too much about computers, networking, etc. coming in to get caught up. Giving out BB's is just another step in educating them for the real world....

Mark Rejhon 08-27-2004 09:59 AM

It will teach them on the real-life business world of constant communications even if you're away from the desk. You need to be receptive of that these days now in order to do a good job and a Blackberry is a good tool for that. So it is not stupid. It may be a toy in other respects, but if the school actively uses email and Internet to all the students for distribution of things like homework etc, the Blackberry can easily be adapted into the existing infrastructure easily.

Also -- new additions to the class could be made to enhance the training of business-handling due to the provision of a business communication device. A business emergency simulation drill would be a good fun addition too, like a pretend CFO sending a simulated "unexpected urgent message" that an MBA must be able to behave in a prescribed manner to help administrate the emergency, for bonus points.

Therefore, this is not Blackberry training.
This is constant-communications training, with Blackberry as the tool.
It's a valid part of the modern MBA life.

finch 08-27-2004 10:43 AM

I think effective communication as a whole is essential to business today. Maybe it's and the sales world I live day to day but I'd be lost daily without my Blackberry.

yahtzee 09-12-2004 05:01 PM

Honestly, I cant find a single reason why this WOULDNT be a good idea.

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