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Beacon Newsletter

June 2020

Beacon Event

Greetings from BEACON at Salisbury University –

Somewhere in the Cloud!


Even though BEACON’s pandemic-related teleworking regime continues, I stop by the BEACON suite at Perdue Hall on Tuesdays and Thursdays to collect mail. The empty hallways, offices and cubicles make me so sad. Our team is as productive as ever. Teleworking has not had an adverse impact on our productivity. Yet, I will be the first one to admit, productivity is not everything. The ebb and flow of activity in the office, and the crazy schedules when we used to juggle meetings, site visits, working lunches, birthdays and holiday celebrations are all gone. I never knew silence could be such a loud sound. I miss the organized chaos of our project meetings. I miss the friendly banter. I miss the smells of coffee and whatever was being warmed in the microwave oven for a quick bite in between meetings. The copier is cold, the shredder is silent, and the squeak of the front door to the BEACON suite opening and closing is no longer heard. I may be sad, but I am also so very proud of our team. They are handling such a difficult situation so well. I cannot wait until they are all back at Suite 100 in Perdue Hall, managing that sweet chaos we call the workday. Until then, the two-dimensional virtual meetings will have to suffice.


Memo Sarah

Dr. Memo Diriker, Director                                           

BEACON Project News

MAC Life Bridges

BEACON Webinar Series


Over the past 12 weeks, BEACON has partnered with the Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce, the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore, the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore and the Onley Theatre Center to present 15, hour-long webinars on economic updates, post-pandemic preparedness, and strategic thinking for the private and nonprofit sectors throughout the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

Economic Update 5 months into Covid Pandemic
Post-Pandemic Preparedness
Ahead of the wave
Post-Pandemic Scenarios

The Impact of K-12 Public Schools 


It’s no secret that education is a critical component of our society. It provides individuals with the opportunities to learn, develop and contribute as the grow from young children to adulthood. The impact of education goes far beyond the individuals receiving its valuable lessons; it impacts the entire community and the economy. Education is a significant economic driver and a quality educational system can provide substantial value to the local and regional economy that lasts a lifetime.

The economic value of the educational system is three-fold. First, just as any other organization operating within the economy, a school system provides economic, employment and fiscal impacts to the county and state. School systems participate in economic transactions with vendors for goods and services and pay employees who generate additional economic activity. Second, a quality education further increases students’ ability to impact the local economy when they transition into the workforce. A strong educational background provides students the ability to join the workforce upon graduation or continue on to pursue additional education. Those who go on to successfully complete certifications or further degrees have an increased lifetime earning potential, which results in a higher level of economic activity. Third, school systems impact the quality of life in the local community, which, in some instances, have associated economic tie-ins. For instance, quality school systems make communities more desirable, increasing property values as families seek to locate closer to such schools. Additionally, research has shown that students who graduate high school are typically associated with fewer public health care-, crime- and welfare-related costs over the course of their lifetime. Taken together, this data can be used to provide an estimate of the return on investment of the public schools within a jurisdiction.

Over the past 10 years, BEACON has conducted studies examining the economic and community value of the public school systems within Maryland on a statewide basis and for more than 15 counties. Currently, BEACON is embarking upon another such study for Harford County Public Schools. In addition to the three components already mentioned, this study will also estimate future impacts of the North Star program currently being implemented.


Student Spotlight: Braeden Dahl

braeden Dahl

My name is Braeden Dahl and I am the social media marketing intern with BEACON at Salisbury University. I am currently an upcoming senior graduating in May 2021 with a degree in marketing and a focus on digital and social media marketing. I grew up in Atlanta, GA, moved to Baltimore County in the sixth grade, and now live in Salisbury year round. I expected choosing which college was right for me to be incredibly difficult, but after visiting Salisbury the second time, I knew it was the place for me. Choosing just one thing to study was incredibly hard for me, and it took me seven major changes and almost two years before I finally realized marketing was right for me.

Since deciding my major I’ve had many amazing and exciting opportunities, the most recent of which was being brought into BEACON as their new intern in May. At BEACON, I have the opportunity to run social media accounts, create promotional videos for the company and design the organization's newsletter. I am very excited to learn new skills and continue to use the skills I’ve already learned in my marketing classes while working with BEACON. Hopefully in the future, we’ll be able to work in a traditional environment again, but even in the current teleworking state, I’m happy to be aboard!

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Contact Information

1101 Camden Ave.

Perdue Hall, Suite 100

Salisbury, MD 21801


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SU is an Equal Opportunity/AA/Title IX university and provides reasonable accommodation given sufficient notice to the University office or staff sponsoring the event or program. For more information regarding SU’s policies and procedures, please visit .  


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