Aug. 28, 2023

Starting the school year strong: Haskayne School of Business experiences notable enrolment growth and refines programming to promote continuous learning

Changes to business school’s educational delivery aim to increase flexibility, attract a wider student base and better prepare students for today’s workforce

Calgary, AB – Fall classes will soon be in session and the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary is set to welcome one of its largest student populations to date. To match this unprecedented demand and to elevate the educational experience for its students, the school has implemented changes to its undergraduate and graduate programs and added new courses to its curriculums. With the ever-growing economic need to build a highly skilled talent pipeline and remove barriers to education, Haskayne evaluated its program offerings to assess where the school could offer more flexibility, relevant course material and work-integrated learning opportunities.

Haskayne’s undergraduate program (Bachelor of Commerce) is seeing its greatest increase in first-year enrolment ever, growing by almost 30 per cent over last year. This growth was supported by a funded multi-year domestic expansion, which will afford Haskayne the ability to continue to grow. Haskayne’s total undergraduate student population is now approaching 3,600 domestic and international students. 

This academic year marks a transformative time for us at Haskayne as our enrolment rates soar and we look to introduce a new group of talented, passionate and diverse undergraduate students to the world of business.The pace in which the world is changing has accelerated, and with it we’re seeing a heightened interest in business studies as students recognize the immense value business education can provide in equipping them with the knowledge, skills and confidence to excel in the workforce. At Haskayne, we understand the responsibility we hold in preparing the next generation of leaders, which is why we’re excited to introduce new innovative courses and strengthen our hands-on learning offerings.”

Catherine Heggerud, associate dean, undergraduate programs, Haskayne School of Business

Haskayne’s graduate programs are also experiencing tremendous growth. Applications for the school’s Master of Management program saw year-over-year growth of 27 per cent, causing the program to reach its highest enrolment to date. To match the uptick in graduate studies and to create greater access to graduate business education, Haskayne has changed the admission requirements for its MBA program. Graduates who have earned a Master of Management degree from a recognized Canadian or U.S. accredited post-secondary institution within the past 10 years may now qualify for course exemptions towards the Haskayne MBA.

When we talk to prospective MBA students, more often than not, they list the time and financial commitment of the MBA program as their greatest barrier to enrolling. Our MBA students are often entering a new phase in their lives – they are starting families, taking on more responsibility at work, becoming homeowners – so they are seeking as much flexibility and affordability as possible. By providing students the option to leverage their Master of Management credits as course exemptions towards their MBA, we can help remove barriers to graduate education, offer more meaningful support and attract a larger pool of talented professionals.”

Ari Pandes, associate dean, professional graduate programs, Haskayne School of Business

Beyond exciting program changes, Haskayne is also adding new courses to its curriculum. Undergraduate students will have access to newly designed courses aimed at helping them solve some of life’s biggest challenges, as well as navigate new disruptive technologies. The new entrepreneurship and innovation course, Generative AI and Prompting, provides an in-depth understanding of generative AI technology and the skill and knowledge required to effectively harness its power. Students will learn how to effectively use tools like ChatGPT and Midjourney in various professional settings and find innovative solutions to real-world problems. The newly piloted first-year entrepreneurship and innovation course, Design Your Life, explores the complexity of designing your life and career journey. Students will engage with alumni, Haskayne advisors and faculty and outside communities to get a sense of what a career path could look like, while tackling dysfunctional beliefs about failure, success and work. Student demand for the fall course has been so strong, boasting an extensive waitlist, that Haskayne has added a second lecture for its Winter 2024 programming. 

First-year students come to university with certain expectations often driven by their parents, their personal beliefs or societal norms, and we realized an opportunity existed to better support these students by providing them with a stronger foundation for entrepreneurial thinking – particularly when it comes to designing their own lives and careers. Designing your life is not as static as it once was. Today, our students will change their jobs and career a lot, and we want to help them develop the skills needed to adapt. I’m excited to launch this course and challenge students to question their values to gain better insight into whether they are designing their own life or instead accepting a life shaped by everyone else.

Houston Peschl, senior instructor of sustainability, entrepreneurship and innovation, Haskayne School of Business

With an expanded student population comes concerns for space, but with the opening of Haskayne’s new business building, Mathison Hall, in January the school greatly strengthened its capacity to accommodate its growing community with ease. The four-storey 10,000-square-metre building added 12 tech-enhanced classrooms to Haskayne’s scope, while also boasting new spaces for study, group work, gathering and more. Mathison Hall finalizes construction this month with the opening of its Food Services which will provide students with made-to-order food with hot, cold and self-serve options, as well as the reopening of Haskayne’s Trading and Finance lab, originally housed in Scurfield Hall.

This fall also marks another marquee moment in Haskayne’s history as the school welcomes Dr. Gina Grandy, PhD as its new dean, effective September 1, 2023. Prior to joining Haskayne, Grandy served as dean of the Hill and Levene Schools of Business at the University of Regina since 2018. She is a full professor with expertise in strategy and leadership and previously held the role of associate dean of research and graduate programs at the Hill and Levene Schools at University of Regina while also serving as the Royal Bank of Canada Women in Leadership Research Scholar.

Grandy completed her Bachelor of Commerce and Master of Business Administration at Memorial University and her PhD in Business Administration – Management at Northumbria University in England. Grandy’s leadership, research, teaching and consulting experiences are international in scope, and she has taught and lead research at seven universities across Canada, the United Kingdom and Ukraine.

With plenty of exciting changes happening at the school, and more on the horizon, Haskayne is strongly situated to have a dynamic 2023-2024 academic year and maintain its position as one of Canada’s top business schools. As a result of the implemented changes, Haskayne is confident the school will attract a more diverse student population and nurture prospective students’ desire to build on their educational experience and add business to their repertoire.

To learn more about Haskayne’s business degree programs, visit

Media inquiries

Lauren Steeves
Senior Communications and Marketing Strategist, Haskayne School of Business

About the University of Calgary
UCalgary is Canada’s entrepreneurial university, located in Canada’s most enterprising city. It is a top-five research university and one of the highest-ranked universities of its age. Founded in 1966, its 35,000 students experience an innovative learning environment, made rich by research, hands-on experiences and entrepreneurial thinking. It is Canada’s leader in the creation of start-upsStart something today at the University of Calgary.

About the Haskayne School of Business
The Haskayne School of Business was founded at the University of Calgary in 1967, and was named in honour of Richard F. Haskayne, OC, AOE, FCA, in 2002. The business school has approximately 4,000 full- and part-time students enrolled in bachelor's, master's, doctorate and executive education programs, and stays connected with its more than 30,000 alumni in 91 countries worldwide. Haskayne is where big ideas come to life and bold leaders thrive. Our mission is to create innovative research, unparalleled learning opportunities and meaningful engagement with our community.

For more information, visit or follow on Twitter @HaskayneSchool. 

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