Fall 2022 term brings curricular changes, new faces, in App State’s Walker College of Business

The 2022-23 academic year brings new educational offerings to students in Appalachian State University’s Walker College of Business.

According to Dr. Tracy Reed, associate dean of undergraduate curriculum and administration, the past few years it’s been the norm, rather than the exception, for new courses or programs to be offered. 

This term is no different. The college has added a minor in cybersecurity and new concentrations for management majors in innovation and entrepreneurship, human resources, and sustainable business. The college is also offering a graduate degree in accounting analytics for the first time, part of the MS in Accounting program.

“Our curriculum changes to keep pace with industry and what our students want to learn,” said Reed. “We monitor what our graduates need to become the candidates employers are looking for and to have successful business careers.”

The college boasts a strong rate of employment, with the latest numbers suggesting 91% of recent graduates who responded to surveys are at their preferred career destination (or other preferred destinations, like graduate school).

Curricular Updates

Cybersecurity Minor

Housed in the Department of Computer Information Systems, a cybersecurity minor is now available to all business and non-business majors (except those majoring in CIS with a concentration in cybersecurity).

Students may earn a cybersecurity minor by completing the 15 hours of coursework, including nine hours of required courses and six hours of electives.

Required courses include networking and IT infrastructures, audit analytics, and managing security. Electives include topics such as blockchain for business and CIS ethical hacking, among others.

The college’s new minor in cybersecurity follows closely on the heels of a cybersecurity concentration within CIS majors, launched in Fall 2021. One year later, the cybersecurity program already has more than 150 App State students enrolled.

Related: Fall 2021 term brings administrative and curricular changes in App State’s Walker College of Business

New Concentrations in Management

In addition to the general management concentration, the college has added three new concentrations for students earning a BSBA in management

The new concentrations are innovation and entrepreneurship, human resources, and sustainable business.

With the addition of the concentrations, students can also minor in innovation and entrepreneurship.

The programs are housed in the Department of Management, which also houses the university’s hospitality and tourism management program.

See a complete list of App State business programs at business.appstate.edu/programs.

Students interested in the new management concentrations or the cybersecurity minor should make an appointment with a business academic advisor, businessadvising.appstate.edu.

Staff Changes

Students will also see some new faces around Peacock Hall, home of the Walker College. In addition to first year students, the college added 17 new faculty members this term.

Related: The Walker College welcomes new business faculty for Fall 2022

Two faculty members in the Walker College have been appointed to staff leadership roles in the college.

Mary Ann Hofmann, MS in Accounting Program co-Director


Dr. Mary Ann Hofmann, a professor of accounting, will serve as co-director for App State’s Master of Science in Accounting program.

Hofmann, who joined Appalachian’s faculty in 2006, is known for her teaching and research. She earned the college’s Sywassink Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2021, and her research has been published in Journal of the American Taxation Association, National Tax Journal and Advances in Taxation, among others. 

Hofmann is a member of the American Accounting Association and the Institute of Managerial Accountants. She earned her BS from Union College, an MBA from the University of Nebraska, an MST from Grand Valley State University and a Ph.D. from Arizona State University. 

Dr. Hofmann can be reached by email, hofmannma@appstate.edu.

Dwayne McSwain, MS in Accounting Program co-Director


Dr. Dwayne Mcswain, a professor of accounting, will serve as co-director for App State’s Master of Science in Accounting program.

McSwain’s research has been published in Internal Auditing, Journal of Accounting Literature, Journal of Forensic Accounting Research, Journal of Government Financial Management, and The CPA Journal, among others. He is a member of the American Accounting Association, American Institute of CPAs, Association of Government Accountants, Government Finance Officers Association, and the Tennessee Society of CPAs.

McSwain holds an AAS degree from Gaston College, a BS degree from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, an MBA from Tarleton State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Arlington. 

Dr. McSwain can be reached by email, mcswaindn@appstate.edu.

"I am very grateful for the hard work Lynn Stallworth did as the program director from 2019 - 2022, including leading a graduate curriculum review, and launching a new concentration in data analytics in our MS Accounting program," said Dr. Pennie Bagley, chair in the Department of Accounting.

Jason Xiong, Master of Applied Data Analytics Program Director


Dr. Jason Xiong, an associate professor of information systems, will serve as director for Appalachian’s Master of Science in Applied Data Analytics program.

Dr. Xiong previously served as acting director of the program.

Related: Fall 2021 term brings administrative and curricular changes in App State’s Walker College of Business

Three individuals are new to the staff in the Walker College. 

Michelle Brown, Business Career Services Associate Director


Michelle Brown joined the Walker College’s staff in August as associate director and graduate programs career coach for the Walker College’s office of Business Career Services.

Previously, Brown has served App State as assistant director of career exploration, assistant director and career counselor for the College of Arts and Sciences, and as a lecturer in the Interdisciplinary Studies Department, the Student Learning Center and the First Year Seminar program. In her new role in the Walker College, Brown will coach students in the MBA, MS in Applied Data Analytics, and MA in Industrial-Organizational Psychology and Human Resource Management programs. 

Brown is a two-time App State alumna, having earned her bachelor’s degree in healthcare management and master’s degree in student development in 1998 and 2000, respectively.

Brown can be reached by email, brownmd@appstate.edu

Virginia Wallace, Leadership Annual Giving

8S3luCl5qqrAdUxIKkFFC4g_PTkS1HO1TdDQY8iLKFnH9_p34pzBE8lxX5K0bkl14vf4xlK5sBAFjSJ-_cNJvADdZd5EVg3m5jAjVBXe0tQ1y93g7lbL_0k70Ru19LR94-UlnsZB94P0lOqnnjCO7nMVirginia Wallace joined the Walker College’s Dean’s Office staff in February as a leadership annual giving officer, focused primarily on Dean’s Club giving.

Wallace’s previous roles at App State include gift officer in the annual fund office and director of donor relations and development operations with App State Athletics.

Wallace earned a bachelor’s degree from Agnes Scott College and an MPA from Middle Tennessee State University. 

Wallace can be reached by email, wallacevl2@appstate.edu

Beth Watts, Academic Advisor


Beth Watts joined the staff in the Walker college in July as an academic advisor in the Walker College’s Business Academic Advising Center.

Watts has served transfer students for the last ten years, most recently as associate director of transfer advising for App State. She previously taught transfer courses at Caldwell Community College, Watauga campus, and has served on various state boards to promote transfer student success. Watts brings a wealth of knowledge and advising experience, along with a passion to assist students with their academic endeavors.

Watts is a three-time App State alumna, having earned her bachelor’s in sociology, her master’s in professional school counseling, and an Ed.S. in Higher Education Administration. 

Watts can be reached by email, wattsbl@appstate.edu.

About the Walker College of Business

The Walker College of Business at Appalachian State University delivers transformational educational experiences that prepare and inspire students to be ethical, innovative and engaged business leaders who positively impact our community, both locally and globally. The college places emphasis on international experiences, sustainable business practices, entrepreneurial programs and real-world applications with industry. Enrolling approximately 3,000 undergraduates in 10 majors and 175 graduate students in three master's programs, the Walker College is accredited by AACSB International – the premier global accrediting body for schools of business. Learn more at https://business.appstate.edu.

Fall 2022 term brings curricular changes, new faces, in App State’s Walker College of Business
Published: Aug 20, 2022 10:29am