Students use Summer Term to work on certificates

Student focusing on computer with UW logo in foreground

There’s nothing minor about a certificate from UW–Madison. In addition to your major, certificates help you stand out and get noticed by employers or graduate schools. UW–Madison has more than 50 certificates in areas ranging from African Studies to Science of Fermented Food and Beverages.

Summer Term is a perfect time to make progress on a certificate in addition to your degree.

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Rising junior Yashodhara Dhariwal: When I heard about this summer certificate, I quickly took the opportunity.

Yashodhara Dhariwal, a rising junior, is adding the Summer Certificate in Business Fundamentals to her computer science major because she thinks it will help her start her own tech business someday.

“Business runs in my family, and I have always longed to get a little peek into this subject,” Dhariwal says. “When I heard about this summer certificate, I quickly took the opportunity. I decided I wanted to make full use of my Summer Term and also gain knowledge on the fundamentals of business.”

New this summer, the Wisconsin School of Business added the Summer Certificate in Business Fundamentals as the university’s first summer-only certificate. You can complete it entirely over the course of two summers.

Get ready for work or grad school

“The summer business certificate is really a way to offer fundamental business courses to more students,” says Jim Franzone, assistant dean at the School of Business. “We think these business courses could give any student a competitive advantage when they start looking for a job.”

Headshot of Joey Chen
Rising senior Joey Chen said the summer business certificate will help him choose a course of study in graduate school.

The Summer Certificate in Business Fundamentals is for non-business majors who have completed 12 credits in residence at UW–Madison and have earned a minimum GPA of 2.75. It provides basic business education to students pursuing majors outside the Wisconsin School of Business.

“I have always had an interest in business, and the business certificate allows me to study it without adding a third major,” says senior John Lilek, double majoring in chemistry and life science communications. “I feel like this certificate will complement my communication skills and allow me even more opportunities to not only get my foot in the door but also climb the ladder at the company I may work at.”

These skills could also help students enter a graduate program.

Joey Chen, a rising senior majoring in economics and mathematics, decided to declare the Summer Certificate in Business Fundamentals in order to prepare for graduate study in the finance arena.

“I think this certificate program will not only fulfill some basic application requirements of the master’s program I choose, but it will also help me see which specific major I will choose in graduate school,” Chen says. “I also hear that Finance 300 is an amazing course to take in the business school, and the basic finance courses can be beneficial even in my daily life.”

Boost business knowledge and skills

To get the 12-credit certificate, students must take ACCT IS 300 Accounting Principles or ACCT IS 100 Introductory Financial Accounting and then select three more courses from the following:

  • FINANCE/ECON 300 Introduction to Finance

    Headshot of John Lilek
    Senior John Lilek: This certificate will complement my communication skills and allow me even more opportunities.
  • MARKETING 300 Marketing Management
  • MHR 300 Managing Organizations
  • OTM 300 Operations Management
  • RMI 300 Principles of Risk Management

An Associate Dean at the School of Business, Brian Mayhew says that learning outcomes focus on important fundamentals: “We expect students to be able to read and interpret financial statements, describe the risk return relationship and identify ways to mitigate risk, describe basic business strategy and processes and finally perform cost benefit analysis.”

Franzone adds, “Many of these business courses are courses that students are taking anyway, so this certificate is a really accessible way to put things together and earn that credential to differentiate yourself on your resume’.”

If you’re interested in earning a certificate, take a look at DARS and talk to your advisor, and declare the Summer Certificate in Business Fundamentals. If you have already declared a certificate, DARS will show you what requirements you still need to meet.

Search summer courses and enroll for Summer Term at MyUW.

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