Kristen BranchDear Alumni, External Advisory Board members and Friends of the A.C. Nielsen Center,

Thank you for taking some time to read about the fall semester activities for the A.C. Nielsen Center. We are fortunate to have such a strong community of alumni and industry friends - which you will read about in a few of the student articles.

As the semester wraps up and students head out for the holidays and winter break, I am reminded of the huge amount of activity and growth that happens in the fall semester. Most notably is the second year students returning from their summer internships with a new level of professional maturity, confidence and understanding of business and marketing research. It is extremely rewarding to see students beam ear to ear with stories of their research, findings and recommendations to turn those insights into business action. Thank you to all of the company partners who gave our students such awesome opportunities.

Our first year students had wonderful internship opportunities this fall through on campus recruiting. We had 16 employers actively try to recruit our 14 students and many of them wanted more than one intern for next summer. Some of our new employer recruiters included Whitewave Foods, eBay, Qualtrics, and Mattel. Sean Vidal's article points out that across the 14 students, over 30 internship offers were made! We are fortunate to have such high industry demand for our students.

I continue to focus on learning how the marketing research industry is evolving to consider those implications to the A.C. Nielsen Center. One of the ways we are doing this is through adding new types of companies to our External Advisory Board. We are excited to share that eBay and LinkedIn have recently joined the EAB and are bringing with them internship and applied learning opportunities. I attended this fall's TMRE conference with two students and LinkedIn's presentation on how they blend primary research with Big Data analytics was wonderful fodder for how to ensure our program is both preparing students for success today as well as the future.

As December is full of giving – both of our time and presents to loved ones, but also to charitable organizations, I ask you to consider giving to the A.C. Nielsen Center and the Wisconsin School of Business. Our A.C. Nielsen Center endowment covers approximately 40% of our operating budget so your gift will immediately impact all the Center does and our primary focus– student scholarships. Currently, when you donate to the Wisconsin School of Business Fund an anonymous donor will match your donation 1:1 until end of day December 31st so your gift will go even further. Both the A.C. Nielsen Center fund and the Wisconsin School of Business Fund can accept single gifts, monthly, or multi-year pledges via easy processing. We also appreciate your gift of time – please let us know if you want to speak in a call, mentor or hire a student or send us a prospective student. You are always welcome to email or call me – connecting with you is always a highlight.

Enjoy the fall newsletter and the photo gallery and cheers to all that 2016 will bring!

On, Wisconsin!