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Update | Fall/Winter 2023

School News: High Rankings for WSB Programs, New Real Estate Track, and More

Introducing WSB’s New Master’s in Accounting and Business Analysis

In Fall 2024, classes will begin for WSB’s new Master of Science–Business: Accounting and Business Analysis. Students will learn from faculty and industry experts in taxation, consulting, emerging technology, and more to gain advanced technical and analytical skills and develop a deeper understanding of systems, controls, and data analysis.

The one-year program boasts an innovative curriculum that is specially tailored to the industry’s new certified public accountant exam, equipping students with a competitive edge for success. “The curriculum is designed using input from our alumni and employers—meaning students gain the skills employers want and can make an impact on day one,” says Stacie Kelley, the James L. Henderson Professor and an associate professor of accounting and information systems at WSB.

In addition to hands-on learning, students will also benefit from career coaching and connections to top recruiting companies—including some of the largest accounting firms in the country.

WSB Welcomes 8 New Faculty Members

Eight new faculty members joined WSB in Fall 2023, deepening the school’s investment in knowledge and thought leadership that will shape industry and educate the next generation of leaders. “Our newest faculty members bring impactful research and expertise at a time when change in the business and technological landscape is unprecedented,” says Vallabh Sambamurthy, WSB’s Albert O. Nicholas Dean.

Specializing in cross-disciplinary topics like artificial intelligence, climate change, and racial disparities, these faculty will address some of today’s most critical questions and help students think strategically about complex business issues.

By academic department, the new faculty members are:

Management and Human Resources
Anyi Ma | Mahka Moeen

Risk and Insurance
Philip Mulder | Stuart Craig

Tarun Kushwaha

Accounting and Information Systems
Ewelina Forker

Erik Mayer | Anthony DeFusco

Barb Bolens

Alumna Barbara Bolens Hired as Director of Nicholas Center for Corporate Finance & Investment Banking

WSB welcomed alumna Barbara Bolens (BBA ’83) as the new director of the Nicholas Center for Corporate Finance and Investment Banking. Bolens will leverage her executive leadership experience, knowledge, and passion to lead the center into the next stage of its strategic plan.

Previously serving as an advisory board member for the center, Bolens brings a wealth of institutional knowledge to her new role. Additionally, she has experience developing and executing strategies, driving change programs, and communicating vision to multiple constituencies—key strengths that will allow her to expand the center’s reach and enhance its reputation.

Fred Petri Honored With Distinguished Alumni Award

Fred Petri's family stand with WSB deans for his Distinguished Alumni Award
Fred Petri’s family joined WSB deans past and present to accept the award.

Fred Petri (BBA ’69, MBA ’70) was posthumously awarded WSB’s Distinguished Alumni Award, which recognizes exceptional professional careers and honors alumni who make far-reaching impacts in the community, industry, and at UW–Madison. A generous friend and supporter of WSB, Petri passed away in 2021 after a 15-year battle with early onset Alzheimer’s disease.

A ceremony in October 2023 commemorated Petri for his impactful work in the WSB community, specifically involving the James A. Graaskamp Center for Real Estate. He played a vital role in establishing and naming the center, as well as creating new initiatives and programming to drive it forward.

“This is a very prestigious honor,” says Dean Sambamurthy. “We’re fortunate to count Fred not just as an alum, but as a friend and somebody whose passion for Wisconsin never left him.”

icon of grainger hall with #7 ranking

High Marks for WSB Programs

WSB ranked #7 among public institutions and #17 overall in U.S. News & World Report’s 2023-24 annual rankings for best undergraduate business programs.

Several academic programs also earned high rankings:

Real Estate
Insurance/Risk Management

WSB Launches New Track in Affordable Housing and Sustainable Development

As the global real estate climate evolves, topics of housing affordability and sustainability have become increasingly prominent. Recognizing the crucial need for specialized real estate professionals who can navigate these fast-growing areas, the Department of Real Estate and Urban Land Economics has developed a new graduate-level track in affordable housing and sustainable development.

Launching in Fall 2024, the new 12-credit offering adds to WSB’s current portfolio of graduate real estate degrees, which includes the MBA in real estate and the Master of Science-Business: Real Estate and Urban Land Economics. The new track features a concentrated curriculum and hands-on learning with professionals in the field to prepare students for careers in both residential and commercial real estate development with a focus on affordable and sustainable housing issues and financing.

“WSB’s longstanding leadership in real estate and ability to meld tradition and innovation continues with the creation of this new track in affordability and sustainability,” says Mark Eppli (BBA ’83, MS ’84, PhD ’91), director of the James A. Graaskamp Center for Real Estate.