Business celebrates 100 years

September 12, 2000 By Helen Capellaro

The School of Business is observing its 100th birthday with lively celebrations, a look to the future, and acknowledgement of the people and ideas that helped it become one of the nation’s top business schools.

The centennial year kicks off at noon Wednesday, Sept. 13 in the Grainger Hall atrium, where business students are invited for cake and a special Babcock Ice Cream “Grainger Granite Crunch with Academia Nuts.” All business students are invited to don centennial t-shirts for a group photo of the school’s 100th class.

In addition to the student celebration, alums will be treated to a view of the school’s history through a series of “decade rooms” created for Homecoming Oct. 21. A special “Taking Care of Business” fund-raising appeal is encouraging alumni to contribute to the school’s scholarships and other programs.

Wisconsin’s business school was one of the nation’s first five collegiate business programs along with Wharton, California, Chicago and Columbia. It is also one of 17 charter members of the American Association of Collegiate Schools of Business.

While its earliest course offerings emphasized bookkeeping and office practices, Wisconsin’s program has evolved into a world-class program stressing innovation and leadership along with fundamental management skills. It now attracts students from all over the world and has achieved international stature among university business schools.

In recent years, its undergraduate program has been consistently ranked in the nation’s top ten by publications like U.S. News & World Report. The school’s MBA program, first offered in 1944, is ranked among the top 25 in the nation by Business Week and among the 50 best in the world by The Financial Times.

Since Andrew J. Policano joined the school in 1991 as its fifth dean, the school has moved into its new home, Grainger Hall, and added executive MBA and evening MBA programs. And the school has built a campus facility for continuing education, the Fluno Center for Executive Education.

The school currently enrolls 1,600 undergraduates, 620 master’s/MBA students, 75 Ph.D. students, 65 executive MBA students, and 16,000 executive education students.

There are nearly 30,000 UW–Madison business school alumni all over the world.

“I am deeply honored to serve as dean during the centennial of the University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Business,” Policano says. “We have an incredibly rich tradition. Our alumni include leaders of the world’s most successful organizations. Our faculty have developed research and teaching methods utilized in business education and businesses throughout the world.

“Our vision has always been to create the future. Highly innovative programs and highly effective partnerships between talented students, faculty and the community will continue to make our school one of the truly distinguished schools of business,” Policano says.
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–Helen Capellaro, (608) 262-9213