Local businesses and start-ups in the Madison area are turning toward a UW-Madison student organization for help with developing professional skills.
Badger Consulting is a student consulting firm that currently has 40 members who work together in small groups to give consumer insights, as well as conduct industry and market research.
Formally known as Badger Social Media, Badger Consulting was founded by UW-Madison graduate Matt Soderberg in 2012. It won the Bucky's Award for Best New Student Organization On Campus in 2015.
Badger Consulting is open to all undergraduate and graduate students and is not limited to a specific major.
President of Badger Consulting Chad Hendricks said the diversity of the student consulting firm is part of what makes it successful in students gaining real world experience.
“The university creates a good foundation for success and our org gives students the opportunity to apply what they’ve learned in classrooms,” Hendricks said. “Not only at UW-Madison, but with clients we help right now.”
Last semester, two of the eight groups within the organization worked with Fetch Rewards, a grocery rewards app based out of Madison, which was started by former UW-Madison student Wes Schroll.The students were led by a group project manager and conducted beta-testing on the app before it went to market.
“They helped create new strategies and ideas by talking to fellow members and students on what they want in an app and how to position the app to certain targets and market segments,” Hendricks said.
According to Hendricks, the Fetch Rewards app has now reached over 100,000 downloads.
Hendricks said a major goal is to eventually have consulting organizations and firms recruit out of Badger Consulting because of the leadership skills and real life experience students receive with their involvement.