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April 20, 2011

MBA Student Named Presidential Management Fellow

Karla WaldKarla Wald, a University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire MBA student from Chippewa Falls, became a finalist in the Presidential Management Fellow Program, a federal entry-level leadership development program for graduate students. Wald is one of only 10 students from the UW System selected, with the other nine candidates from UW-Madison.

From a pool of 9,100 graduate students from universities across the country, Wald recently ranked among 1,500 semifinalists vying for the opportunity to put leadership skills into action by working for federal agencies and participating in the management of their public policies and programs. Such agencies include the Department of Defense, Internal Revenue Service, Federal Highway Administration and Veterans Administration, among many others.

"I enjoy work with legal overtones such as contracting, regulation and compliance," said Wald, who will attend a job fair in Washington, D.C., April 19-21. "Now the competition begins again—vying for a position. I feel like a kid in a candy store with so many options to choose from."

While many of the positions are in Washington, D.C., Wald may have the opportunity to work in the Twin Cities area, which she finds more desirable. Once selected by an agency, Wald will go through 160 hours of orientation and training on leadership, management, policy and other topics, and participate in a number of consecutive monthlong development assignments.

Fellows receive full salary and benefits and also may be eligible to receive assistance with student loan repayment, depending on the agency for which they work. The objective is for the fellow to stay on with an agency in a leadership capacity at the end of the two-year program.

According to Dr. Robert Erffmeyer, professor of marketing and MBA program director, Wald is the first PMF fellow from UW-Eau Claire.

"Karla brought a wide array of experiences to the MBA program," Erffmeyer said. "Those experiences provided a broad basis for her own learning and contributed to the learning of her fellow students. Her drive and determination served her well in all her past endeavors and will serve her well in the Presidential Management Fellows program."

The PMF program, which was created by executive order in 1977, was established to attract outstanding individuals from a variety of academic disciplines and career paths to public service.

Source: UW-Eau Claire News Bureau

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