UW System campuses to launch 11 new online certificates and one master’s degree this fall to meet market demands

Published: May 18, 2023

New programs will reach students in areas of digital marketing, financial technology, biodiversity conservation, and IT                                                                                                                       

MADISON, Wis.—Students and career professionals will have new online learning opportunities this fall when the University of Wisconsin System launches 11 new certificates and one master’s degree in fast-growing fields. 

The 100 percent online programs were developed collaboratively by several universities and feature graduate-level certificates in the expanding fields of Digital Marketing, Financial Technology, and IT Management, as well as a master’s degree and graduate certificates in Biodiversity Conservation and Management. The semester-based programs join a robust catalog of degrees and certificates giving students the ability to pursue high-demand roles in management and technology. 

“These new certificates and degrees demonstrate that the University of Wisconsin is committed to winning the war for talent,” said UW System President Jay Rothman. “Helping students and professionals meet their career goals while helping develop talent for employers is job one for our online programs. We are going to be relentless in providing new opportunities for nontraditional students in this space.” 

The following campuses have partnered to offer these new programs: UW-Green Bay, UW-La Crosse, UW Oshkosh, UW-Parkside, UW-Stevens Point, and UW-Superior, with administrative support coming from UW Extended Campus. 

Each certificate consists of three courses and nine credits, while the Biodiversity Conservation and Management master’s degree includes 31 credits across 11 courses. A single certificate can be completed within one year, but the flexible format of each program offers students with full-time jobs and other life commitments a longer timeframe to complete courses. Tuition for all programs is the same no matter where a student lives.   

With the growth of today’s technology, digital marketers must adapt to constantly shifting strategies. The graduate-level Digital Marketing certificates offer two options for industry professionals wanting to stay ahead of these trends while elevating their careers in digital marketing. Through a partnership with the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI), students pursuing either of these certificates can earn additional credentials. The two Digital Marketing certificates are offered through UW-La Crosse and UW-Parkside. 

The Digital Marketing Analytics Graduate Certificate centers on using tools to collect, analyze, and prepare data to improve digital marketing strategies. Courses include content that prepares students to sit for the exam to earn the DMI Certified Digital Marketing Professional and American Marketing Association Professional Certified Marketer credentials.  

The Digital Marketing Management Graduate Certificate focuses on developing the skills to be able to manage digital teams while integrating changing technologies into digital marketing initiatives to achieve strategic goals. Courses include content that prepares the students to sit for exams to earn three microcredentials in digital selling, content marketing, and digital strategy from DMI. 

The graduate-level Financial Technology certificates are designed for business professionals wanting to develop skills in the emerging financial technology industry. The Graduate Certificate in Leading Fintech Transformation provides students with the foundational knowledge required to lead and manage financial technology strategies and solutions. The Graduate Certificate in Emerging Technologies in Fintech helps students deepen their understanding of financial institutions and their operational processes. Program curricula will cover technological innovations that have transformed customer services, including contactless payment, blockchain, and artificial intelligence. Both certificates are offered through UW-La Crosse and UW-Parkside. 

The new Master of Science in Biodiversity Conservation and Management, offered through UW-Green Bay, allows professionals who are passionate about the environment to gain the skills to manage complex conservation challenges such as climate change, habitat loss, and species extinction. The 31-credit curriculum covers emerging concepts in conservation management and land stewardship, human-wildlife conflict, and conservation advocacy. Students will also gain valuable, practical experience through a fieldwork project as part of the final capstone course. 

The program features three graduate-level certificates focusing on a specific area of the field: Biodiversity and Conservation Science; Conservation Data Management and Analysis; and Conservation Leadership, Policy, and Management. Each certificate is stackable and consists of three, three-credit courses that are part of the master’s degree curriculum. Students who complete all three certificates and the program’s capstone project will earn the Master of Science in Biodiversity Conservation and Management. 

For those seeking an introduction to the conservation field, the Foundations of Biodiversity Conservation and Management Graduate Certificate serves as an accessible and affordable option where students can learn basic principles without needing to commit to the master’s degree program. All courses and credits for the foundational certificate will apply to the master’s degree and other biodiversity certificates. 

“UW-Green Bay is well-known for its strengths in conservation science,” said John F. Katers, Dean of the College of Science, Engineering, and Technology at UW-Green Bay. “The stackable certificates and master’s degree we will offer online will allow working professionals to gain valuable training and skills in this subject area to immediately apply to their careers and in support of the goals of their organization while paving the way for further learning down the line.” 

To adapt to the needs of the growing IT industry, the Master of Science in Information Technology Management has seen significant updates to its course materials. Similar to the Biodiversity Conservation and Management curriculum, the IT Management program now features stackable certificates where students can earn microcredentials on their way to earning the master’s degree. The number of credits for the program has also been reduced from 37 to 31 credits. The certificates are offered through UW-La Crosse, UW Oshkosh, UW-Parkside, UW-Stevens Point, and UW-Superior.  

The program includes graduate-level certificates in IT Leadership, Enterprise Infrastructure, and IT Operations. Students who complete all three certificates and the final capstone course will earn the IT Management master’s degree. The new structure allows students to enroll in a standalone certificate while having the option to earn marketable credentials that will help advance their careers. 

The new graduate certificates and master’s degree give adult learners even more ways to pursue a University of Wisconsin education. Prospective students interested in learning more about the UW Extended Campus programs can contact an enrollment adviser today at 1-608-800-6762 or learn@uwex.wisconsin.edu.  

About UW Extended Campus 

UW Extended Campus partners with all 13 UW System campuses to offer online degrees and certificates, as well as continuing education and lifelong learning opportunities. Through UW Extended Campus, people of Wisconsin and beyond can access university resources and engage in online learning, wherever they live and work—fulfilling the promise of the “Wisconsin Idea.” 

The University of Wisconsin System serves approximately 161,000 students. Awarding nearly 37,000 degrees annually, the UW System is Wisconsin’s talent pipeline, putting graduates in position to increase their earning power, contribute to their communities, and make Wisconsin a better place to live. Nearly 90 percent of in-state UW System graduates stay in Wisconsin five years after earning a degree – with a median salary of more than $66,000. The UW System provides a 23:1 return on state investment. UW System universities also contribute to the richness of Wisconsin’s culture and economy with groundbreaking research, new companies and patents, and boundless creative intellectual energy. The UW System and its employees are purpose-driven, people-focused, and committed to stewardship.


Mark Pitsch
UW System

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