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Update | Spring/Summer 2022

School News

Photography by Paul L. Newby II

Dean Vallabh “Samba” Sambamurthy presenting Chancellor Blank a drawn portrait of Chancellor Blank standing in front of Grainger Hall.

WSB Wishes Chancellor Blank Farewell

Dean Sambamurthy presents Chancellor Rebecca Blank with a farewell gift—a painting created by Theo Howard, digital learning consultant at WSB—during a fireside chat in Grainger Hall this March. Blank leaves UW–Madison this spring to become president at Northwestern University.

New Fintech Course Prepares Students for Digital Asset Marketplace

Starting in Fall 2022, WSB students will be able to take advantage of a new fintech course, Cryptocurrencies, Blockchain, and Digital Assets, designed and taught by Brad Chandler, director of the Nicholas Center for Corporate Finance and Investment Banking.

Fintech, a merging of “finance” and “technology,” is commonly understood as the use of emerging digital technologies like blockchain and others to streamline financial processes. Fintech is a critical area for finance students as well as students from other fields to understand in preparation for jobs in the financial sector.

“The goal is to create a premier educational offering to quickly get students up to speed on the important, leading-edge innovations in the digital asset space,” Chandler says.

Business Alum Wins Entrepreneurial Achievement Award

Jim Bakke (BBA ’77), president and CEO of Sub-Zero Group, Inc., is one of four entrepreneurs to receive the 2022 Chancellor’s Entrepreneurial Achievement Award. The award honors UW–Madison innovators and alumni who further the Wisconsin Idea through outstanding accomplishments in entrepreneurship. The recipients were honored at a ceremony on March 23.

“UW–Madison’s vibrant culture encourages innovation among faculty, staff, students, and alumni. Every day, they change lives through teaching, research, public service, and entrepreneurial activities,” said Chancellor Rebecca Blank.

Since taking the helm at Sub-Zero Group, Inc., Bakke has transformed his family’s business into an industry-leading manufacturer of luxury kitchen appliances. As the third generation of the Bakke family to lead Sub-Zero, he has made investments in the latest technologies and manufacturing processes, innovative cooking products, and new product lines. In the future, the company plans to continue its focus on emerging technology, science, and design.

Day of Giving Exceeds Goal

UW-Madison alumni, students, friends, and parents came together for Day of the Badger on April 5-6 to raise more than $200,000 for the Wisconsin School of Business. More than 320 generous donors helped unlock a $100,000 match from an anonymous donor. Gifts received on Day of the Badger go directly toward funding student scholarships to help WSB build the best and brightest classes at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Day of the Badger illustration

Business Analytics Degree Adds Specialized Tracks

WSB has added two specialized tracks as part of its Master of Science-Business: Analytics (MSBA) degree, a one-year, STEM-designated program that gives students a cross-functional perspective on business and technology. In addition to the core curriculum, students pursuing these tracks will obtain an additional nine credits in specialized coursework.

The digital marketing track prepares students for careers in consumer-centric marketing, social media, SEO, mobile, website application, and digital advertising. Students will learn both the implementation of digital marketing and the key quantitative aspects of the field.

The digital risk and insurance track positions students to manage digital risks or lead digital transformation in the risk and insurance industry. Students pursuing this track gain tools to mitigate cyberattacks, malware, and other novel exposures, and dive into the everchanging technological landscape of insurance.

Launched in the fall of 2019, the MSBA has already doubled in enrollment and is yielding strong career outcomes, with 100% job placement among the 2021 graduating class. The program is garnering impressive rankings as well.