August 11, 2004, Philadelphia, PA – Reed Smith LLP, a leading global law firm, will launch a cutting edge professional development and leadership initiative this fall in partnership with The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and its Executive Education division. The unique venture will be called Reed Smith University (RSU).
The ambitious project includes a comprehensive and innovative year round curriculum to be taught firmwide across five distinct schools — the Schools of Leadership, Business Development, Technology, Professional Support and Law.
“This expansive approach to building a common experience and standards of leadership and practice across the firm represents a sea change in professional development” said Greg Jordan, Reed Smith’s firmwide managing partner. “We intend for Reed Smith University to distinguish itself in terms of its commitment to providing the highest quality professional development to our people. We expect the University will not only be responsive to our firm’s known needs, but it will also help us attract and retain the highest caliber people in every position as we expand within existing markets and into new locations.”
John F. Smith III, a partner in Reed Smith’s Philadelphia office, will serve as RSU’s first Chancellor.
“The overarching purpose of the University is to develop and support existing and emerging leaders across our operations, in every department, practice and geographic location through an intensive on campus experience,” Smith explained. “Aligned with that mission, each School will have its own focus and objective. The RSU School of Leadership, for example, will emphasize developing and motivating leaders and future leaders; the School of Business Development will provide instruction in managing and developing business relationships; the School of Technology will assist employees in gaining the full advantage of the firm’s technology investment; the School of Professional Support will develop first-class support staff for all operations; and the RSU School of Law, will focus on expanding the legal skills of our attorneys.”
“Partnerships with a business school to develop leadership programs are uncommon in the legal services industry,” said Dr. Lynn Phillips, senior director of Executive Education at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. “We are fully committed to working with Reed Smith to deliver high-impact solutions that will promote superior performance.”
In addition to hosting and teaching the Leadership program, Wharton’s role in the partnership includes overall concept development for RSU and concept and curriculum development for the five Schools; professors serving as academic advisors of the Schools; support for development of competency models; review of RSU teaching styles and methods; senior partner membership in the Wharton Fellows network; and provision of Internet-based services to support the academic programming.
Deans from Reed Smith include Arthur H. Stroyd, partner in Pittsburgh, Litigation, and James J. Barnes, also a partner in Pittsburgh, Business & Regulatory, within the School of Law; Elizabeth B. Carder-Thompson, partner in the firm’s Washington, DC office, School of Business Development; Michael B. Pollack, a partner in the firm’s Philadelphia office and the firmwide Director of Strategic Planning, School of Leadership; Mike C. Buckley, partner in Oakland, CA, School of Technology; and, Terence N. Hawley, also a partner in Oakland, School of Professional Support.
RSU courses will provide students with a range of credit options, including continuing legal education (CLE) credits and non-lawyer continuing education credits for other professionals, including accountants and paralegal staff. A range of course delivery options is envisioned, including traditional classes and Internet-based courses. Wharton Executive Education will also provide speakers and materials for courses and participate in joint branding of programs and course materials.
Reed Smith, a leading global law firm with nearly 1,000 lawyers located in 14 U.S. and two U.K. cities, represents Fortune 100 as well as mid-market and emerging companies. Clients include technology companies and entrepreneurs, financial services firms, life sciences companies and health care providers and insurers, communications companies, manufacturers, universities, non-profit organizations, real estate developers, and municipalities throughout the United States, the United Kingdom, and in 40 other countries. For more information, please visit reedsmith.com.
Founded in 1881 as the nation’s first collegiate business school, The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania has approximately 4,600 undergraduates, MBA, and doctoral students, more than 8,000 participants in its executive education programs annually, and an alumni network of more than 80,000 worldwide. Wharton Executive Education is recognized around the world for its academic strengths across every major discipline and at every level of business education.