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UW College of Business Receives Accreditation

March 8, 2017
students walking in and out of a large buildling
The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International granted maintenance of accreditation to the UW College of Business for the next four years. AACSB accreditation is an important piece to consider when students apply to business schools. (UW Photo)

Abby Dommer says her University of Wyoming accounting classes were challenging, but she adds that the program’s curriculum prepares students to succeed in the workplace.

Dommer, from Gillette, received her B.S. in accounting last May and is on track for her master’s degree and CPA certification in 2018.

“I chose to attend the University of Wyoming because I liked that UW was both affordable and recognized for its quality faculty and staff. I like that the programs within the College of Business are flexible and challenging,” Dommer says. “It was nice to be accepted into the college as a freshman, so I was able to explore my major options and still graduate within four years. The class sizes are small, so I’ve really gotten to know my professors and appreciate their help in achieving my career goals.”

Quality undergraduate and graduate programs lure students to the UW campus. And those are just two of the characteristics recently noted by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International in granting maintenance of accreditation to the UW College of Business for the next four years. The latest review occurred this past year.

“For students exploring business school options, AACSB accreditation is an important piece to consider,” says Professor Penne Ainsworth, UW Department of Accounting chair. “Many employers look at which schools have this accreditation to ensure that the graduates they hire have earned a high-quality and up-to-date business education.”

Dommer agrees.

“My UW education will benefit me during my first job, because I know I will have the skills necessary to be an active problem-solver and critical thinker,” Dommer says. “I also feel confident in my ability to interact with my employer and colleagues in a professional and appropriate manner.”

Of the more than 11,000 business schools worldwide, fewer than 5 percent receive accreditation from the AACSB. After a two-year continuous improvement review process conducted by a team of business school deans from around the nation, the UW College of Business was reaccredited by the AACSB, says Sanjay Putrevu, College of Business dean. AACSB-accredited business schools have the world’s highest-quality programs, teachers, research and students.

The AACSB accreditation continuous improvement review committee and its board of directors confirmed extension of accreditation in February, and commended the College of Business for its programs, faculty scholarship and “excellent efforts to gather data on ‘assurance of learning’ in a very short period of time,” Putrevu says.

Owen Phillips, College of Business economics professor and director of assessment and faculty development, Ainsworth and Lindsay Kiefer, senior office assistant who coordinated the data collection, spearheaded the effort on behalf of the college.

“Our faculty and staff continue to work tirelessly in developing ’assurance of learning’ measures that not only meet, but exceed the requirements of AACSB and, more importantly, ensure that our students receive the best possible training both within and outside the classroom,” Putrevu says. “We consider this one of our biggest points of pride. We have always known that UW College of Business students get a great education, but this accreditation provides a key external validation of the exceptional quality of our programs.”

Kiefer adds that she works with the college’s professors to collect data about student outcomes throughout each semester.

“We design rubrics that ensure that the learning outcomes for every class are exceeded, and the data proves that,” she says.

Putrevu has been asked by the AACSB accreditation committee to help evaluate other business schools based on his extensive experience with the accreditation process.

For more information, call the College of Business Dean’s office at (307) 766-4194.

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