AACSB reaffirms COB accreditation

| Gretchen Hutterli

The College of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire has reaffirmed its accreditation by AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Founded in 1916, AACSB International is the world’s largest accrediting body for business schools that offer undergraduate, master's, and doctoral degrees in business and accounting.

The UW-Eau Claire College of Business was first accredited by AACSB International in 1980. Since then, the college has undergone a continuous improvement review (CIR) of its undergraduate business and MBA programs every five years. Through this self-evaluation and peer-review process, the College of Business must demonstrate its continued commitment to quality standards relating to mission and innovation, faculty and staff qualifications, learning and teaching, and academic and professional engagement.

During the summer of 2017, Interim Dean Tim Vaughan submitted a 50-page continuous improvement report with over a 1,000 pages of appendices to AASCB. In mid September, a three-person team of business deans from similar AACSB accredited programs was on campus to meet with students, faculty and staff, and college administrators. The peer review team's recommendation for extension of accreditation was reviewed and approved by the AACSB Continuous Improvement Review Committee, then forwarded to the AACSB Board of Directors which ratified the decision in January 2018. 

"This reaffirmation of our AACSB accreditation is a direct reflection of the outstanding work and exceptional learning that occurs, day in and day out, throughout the College of Business," said Vaughan.  "I want to offer my congratulations to all the faculty, staff, and students whose accomplishments have been recognized via the accreditation process. It is certainly an achievement we should all be proud of."


Why Is AACSB accreditation important?

"The UW-Eau Claire College of Business has a long tradition of excellence; however, AACSB accreditation acknowledges the quality and reputation from an outside source. When prospective students are comparing schools and programs, this accreditation certainly makes us more favorable and competitive in the college search."
Danielle Widmer, Assistant Director, UW-Eau Claire Admissions

"AACSB accreditation increases the value of my degree and it helps continue our college's reputation of preparing students for success. Knowing that I will receive a degree from an institution that is measured by "the highest standards of excellence" gives me great pride."
Brandon Yates, Business Administration Major; UW-Eau Claire Student Senate Chief of Staff

"AACSB accreditation reaffirms the amazing education that students are able to receive at UW-Eau Claire. It is a recognition known around the world of the highest caliber of business colleges. This accreditation assures that students have professors who are current in their field, and it opens up several additional opportunities with potential employers who recruit just from AACSB colleges."
Dr. Kristy Lauver, Management & Marketing Department Chair; Management Professor

"AACSB accreditation is a big deal, particularly for our graduate students. Our MBA program is entirely online, so having a pretty campus or a new building isn’t of high importance to them. They are looking for high caliber programs with strong student-focused faculty.  If you were looking for one indicator of that it would be accreditation by AACSB."
Dr. Bob Erffmeyer, UW MBA Consortium Director; Marketing Professor

"Teaching at an AACSB-accredited institution is important to me, because AACSB accreditation guarantees program-quality rigor. That rigor is integrally correlated with the high-quality students who enter our college, the high level of expectations we have for those students, and the critical-thinking careers our graduates pursue. I consider only AACSB-accredited colleges of business when making a teaching/research career move."
Dr. Jean Pratt, COB Interim Associate Dean; Information Systems Professor

"In today's environment it is critical to HORMEL foods that we hire the brightest and best graduates from accredited business schools.  A sound educational background, which we are assured of through the accreditation process, along with work experience through a strong internship program have been our success in hiring and retaining our professional work force."  
Kurt Mueller, Sr. VP Sales, Hormel Consumer Products Sales