The Southern Management Leadership Program (SMLP) encourages future UMD students to submit applications

By Jonathan Spires, Editor in Chief


Students interested in developing their professional networking skills can apply to the Southern Management Leadership Program (SMLP) which will be accepting applications beginning Tuesday, Mar. 1. The program was a participant in this semester’s Club Rush on Wednesday, Feb. 22, held in the ST building.

On Wednesday, Feb. 22, Montgomery College’s Spring 2022 Club Rush featured several clubs and organizations that cater to students’ interests and needs. Among them were the Student Senate, the African Student Association, the Ethiopian Student Association, and several student service departments.

“It doesn’t hurt to try. Once you’re in the program you’ll thank me later,” said student and program participant Stephen Ruiz. As an economics major, he encouraged students who may not be convinced of the benefits of the program to consider the internships and financial assistance available through the program.

Have you participated in a paid or unpaid internship since enrolling as a MC student?


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As described on the Montgomery college website, the Southern Management Leadership Program supports the development of student leaders by providing resources for students. During the three-year program students could receive financial aid that may cover up to 55% of tuition costs for students attending Montgomery College and Prince George’s County Community College. Students attending the University of Maryland (UMD), College Park, could have up to 50% of their tuition covered through the program.

Funds provided by the program can be used for books and technological needs and are awarded to students who fulfill the scholarship requirements. A brochure displayed at Wednesday’s Club Rush lists these requirements for students interested in applying:

  1. The student is on track to graduate with an associate degree from Montgomery College and with a bachelor’s degree from University of Maryland, College Park within 3 years of program entry.
  2. The student is actively pursuing their first bachelor’s degree.
  3. The student is a United States Citizen, Permanent Resident, or a Dream Act student and a Maryland resident.
  4. The student is in a program that transfers to UMD. Students who are pre-law are not eligible.
  5. The student is committed to additional programmatic and team-building activities outside of class.
  6. The student is available for a daytime SMLP credit course every course semester.
  7. The student has completed a minimum of 30 credit hours by Fall program entry.
  8. The student has a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher (some majors may require a higher GPA).
  9. The student has taken a transferable math course or is eligible to take a college-level math course during the first semester in the program.
  10. The student has completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

The program president,­­ Suzanne Hillman, founded both the Southern Management Companies (SMC) and Hillman Family Foundation over 50 years ago to assist students within Montgomery County and Prince George’s County with the mission of graduating leaders that plan on giving back to their local communities.

“We have witnessed wonderful success with this program as our student have graduated and gone on to be positive influences in their communities, and we look forward to celebrating many more future accomplishments,” states Hillman on the SMLP brochure.

Students will earn a minor in technology entrepreneurship after completing a series of courses at Montgomery College and another at UMD, according to the website. During this time students will also connect with the SMLP network.

Have you held a leadership position as a MC student?


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Additionally, students will receive one-on-one advising and mentoring geared toward their academic and professional goals. Other opportunities include internships some of which are merit-based and/or paid internships.

The deadline for applications is May 31, and students can submit their application through the SMLP Prospective Students page on the  MC website.