BBA students concerned about program integrity

A group of upper year students at Wilfrid Laurier University visited the undergraduate bachelor of business and administration  office on Tuesday to make their voices heard regarding concerns they have about the entrance average to their program.

The six BBA students decided it was necessary to engage in conversation as a group with faculty in order to express their concerns and provide feedback about the university’s business program.

They approached Lisa Keeping, director of undergraduate business programs, and explained why they, as students, feel the way they do.

Part of this conversation included the students discussing what they liked about the program and what changes they’d like to see in the future.

“For the most part it was them providing feedback,” Keeping explained.

“Other than that, in a general sense, they definitely talked about the quality of the program and wanting to ensure that the students who are moving through the program are students that we want to see graduating. Students that we’re proud to see going out into the business world and look good for Laurier.”

Maintaining the quality of the program was another point they touched on. Third year BBA student, Andrew Burton, who participated in the meeting, said that he believes there is not enough attrition in the program and that it isn’t difficult enough.

“What they tell business kids in orientation is: ‘look to your right, and look to your left, and only one of you will be here by third year,’” he explained.

“But I can look down the row and everyone is still here. And I don’t think a lot of those kids should be in the program.”

Coming away from the meeting, both Burton as well as Vanessa Frey, a third-year BBA student who also attended the meeting, agreed that the seven of them had similar desires and beliefs about the program.

Frey also explained how the meeting disproved a rumour she had heard that admission requirements for the business program had been lowered.

Kim Morouney, associate dean of business: academic programs, spoke to this as she said, “The fact is we have accepted more students, but we haven’t lowered our standards to do that. The cut off [last year] was an 87, and most people came in well above an 87.”

The program itself has also been reconfigured. Laura Allan, assistant professor at the school of business and economics, explained, “What we’ve done is to not make it harder or easier, but to make it better. To make it a higher quality, give them the things they need, and to make it make more sense.”

When asked what she would tell students who are concerned with the program’s quality, Morouney said, “The reason they see all these signs ‘building Canada’s best business school’ is because we believe that we are Canada’s best business school or that we are very close to being the best.”

But this is not Burton’s perception as he expressed, “I think my biggest concern is that they’re going from trying to make it Canada’s best business school to trying to make Canada’s biggest business school.”

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