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Update | Fall/Winter 2023

A Day in Their Lives: 3 Graduate Students Level Up Their Business Education at WSB

Haley Tollison

Photography by Paul L. Newby II

Any alum will tell you that the path to a graduate business degree is full of twists, turns, and competing priorities. Coming from a variety of academic backgrounds and career experiences, graduate students are juggling daily responsibilities—like full-time jobs and personal relationships—while also working towards their unique career goals.

That’s why graduate programs at WSB are designed to fit each student’s lifestyle, professional objectives, and academic pace. New and expanded programs help Business Badgers launch, pivot, and accelerate their business careers with features like customizable learning, hybrid formats, and flexible timelines. Meet Malgy Blue, Maija Inveiss, and Joe Tenpenny, three graduate students who are defining their own academic paths and advancing their business careers—one day at a time.

Malgy Blue

Malgy Blue (BS ’23, MS ’24)

The Launcher

After earning his undergraduate degree in data science and economics from UW–Madison—and holding internships with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Chime—Malgy Blue quickly realized that a career leveraging data was his destiny.

He is pursuing the Master of Science-Business: Analytics to fine-tune his analytics acumen, see data through a business lens, and make strides towards his ultimate career goal. Blue dreams of becoming a chief product or technology officer at a mid-sized technology company in San Francisco.

Day in His Life

7 a.m. | Already out of bed, Blue heads out the door to attend a workout class near his apartment. He’s been going to an indoor cycling studio to get out of his comfort zone.

8 a.m. | Blue returns home, gets cleaned up for the day, and hops on his laptop. Not only is Blue a full-time student, but he’s also holding a full-time position at Chime as a product insights analyst. While working remotely, he sends messages on Slack and reviews his assigned tickets. With his team in San Francisco—two hours behind Wisconsin—Blue will have his morning tasks
completed before his colleagues pour their coffee.

9 a.m. | He makes breakfast and walks to Grainger Hall for his first class: Data Technology for Business Analytics.

12 p.m. | Back on the clock at Chime, Blue hurries to a private room on the third floor of Grainger Hall. He attends meetings, performs A/B testing, and spends the rest of his shift coding in Python or SQL.

4 p.m. | The workday is finished, but Blue has one more class to attend. He heads back to the second floor for Machine Learning for Business Analytics.

6 p.m. | Blue grabs a quick snack at home and drives to the Bakke Recreation & Wellbeing Center for his evening workout, one of his favorite after-school activities.

7:30 p.m. | After making dinner, he researches Medium articles and reads books to learn more about product management.

8 p.m. | If there’s time to spare, Blue treats himself to a game of The Legend of Zelda on his Nintendo Switch.

9 p.m. | Blue has a full workday tomorrow, so he’s off to bed. He’s made it through another day of working, learning, and getting one step closer to his dream job.

Malgy Blue walking to class in front of WSB
Malgy Blue posing with two friends

Maija Inveiss

Maija Inveiss (BA ’17, MBA ’24)

The Pivoter

Writing, editing, and website management were common tasks for Maija Inveiss, a former associate editor for Madison Magazine. But when the COVID-19 pandemic sent a shockwave through the journalism industry, Inveiss was tasked with multiple marketing projects to keep the magazine afloat—and instantly fell in love with the work. Ready to redefine her career path, Inveiss enrolled in the full-time MBA program with a specialization in brand and marketing management.

Day in Her Life

8:30 a.m. | Not much of a morning person, Inveiss wakes up about an hour before class, giving herself just enough time to get ready, pack a lunch, prepare her backpack, and head out the door.

9 a.m. | She listens to podcasts during her 15-minute walk to Grainger Hall. She arrives early to enjoy the classroom atmosphere and sharpen her focus for the day.

9:30 a.m. | As class begins, Inveiss starts taking detailed notes on her iPad. With ambitions of becoming a brand manager for a consumer-packaged goods company, she’s determined to soak up as much information as possible. Some of her classes include Social Creative Marketing, Digital Communication Strategy, and Growth Marketing Strategies.

12 p.m. | Inveiss enjoys a bite to eat while attending one of WSB’s student-led TED Talks or lunch and learn seminars. On days when she doesn’t bring lunch, she stops by the food carts on Library Mall.

2 p.m. | While waiting for afternoon class to begin, she drops by the lounge in WSB’s Marketing Leadership Institute to study, complete assignments, and connect with peers.

5 p.m. | After class, Inveiss busies herself with student organizations and club meetings, acting as the communications chair for the Graduate Business Association, the president of the Masters’ Foodie Club, and the co-chair of the Graduate Marketing Network Case Competition.

8 p.m. | Finally home, she eats dinner with her partner and they kick back with a good cooking show—Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is among their favorites.

10 p.m. | A self-proclaimed night owl, Inveiss studies for exams, works on assignments, relaxes—and gets ready to do it all again tomorrow.

Maija Inveiss working on laptop in MLI lounge
Maija Inveiss

Joe Tenpenny

Joe Tenpenny (MBA ’24)

The Accelerator

With his sights set on a C-suite position at an alternative investment management firm, Joe Tenpenny searched for a graduate program that would fill the gaps in his business knowledge, expand his worldview, and fast-track his career growth. He found the perfect match in WSB’s professional MBA. Thanks to the mix of in-person and online classes, Tenpenny is earning his degree while keeping his role of vice president of operations at Blackthorne Capital Management LLC.

Two Days in His Life

Wednesday, 7 a.m. | The thought of French roast coffee lures Tenpenny out of bed.

9 a.m. | While working remotely, he makes trades, manages portfolio risk, and collaborates with his team. In between meetings, he walks his Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Molly.

4 p.m. | Exercise is a vital part of Tenpenny’s routine, so he goes for a run. Afterwards, he reviews his notes, ensuring that he’s ready to participate in the evening’s class.

6:15 p.m. | He attends online class, which consists of breakout rooms and cohort discussions. During one of his scheduled breaks, he eats a quick dinner with his wife.

Saturday, 7 a.m. | Before his 20-minute drive to Grainger Hall, he meditates—and has coffee, of course—to prepare for the long day ahead.

8 a.m. | Tenpenny’s school day begins, packed full of lectures, case study discussions, and the occasional exam. Some of his classes include Risk Management, Managerial Accounting, and Corporate Financial Theory and Practice. These classes comprise the Financial Insights badge that he’s currently pursuing.

12 p.m. | Tenpenny and his close-knit cohort members head to the Memorial Union Terrace for lunch by the water. They talk, laugh, and take walks before afternoon classes.

4:30 p.m. | Class is dismissed, but Tenpenny and his cohort always make the most of their time together. They attend soccer games, organize kickball tournaments, and enjoy each other’s company while in Madison.

8 p.m. | After a long day of on-campus learning and cohort fun, Tenpenny heads home. He winds down by watching The Office—or another show that will make him laugh—with his wife and dog.

Joe Tenpenny in classroom
Joe Tenpenny working at desk