Anthony D. Wood
A.B. Freeman School of Business, Tulane University
“Professor Wood is one of the smartest and most helpful professors I have ever had. He goes above and beyond to ensure his students are receiving and understanding the material at hand. He applies solutions to real world problems when teaching material, which helps students understand the class material in a more useful way that goes beyond textbooks and numbers.” – Olivia McCullough, student
Anthony D. Wood, 47, is Senior Director of Accounting & Finance at Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business. He teaches the popular Burkenroad Reports, a highly competitive course that accepts just 100 students per semester, empowering students to create equity research reports on companies throughout the South. He has been with Tulane since 2011.
He earned an MBA from Tulane’s A.B. Freeman School of Business and a BBA from the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business.
His professional background includes experience with TXU Energy, Capital One Southcoast and Charles Schwab. At Tulane, he is a student mentor for Freeman’s CFA Competition and participates in the annual Burkenroad Reports Investment Conference which attracts more than 800 students, executives, and Wall Street analysts. His Burkenroad teaching team won first place for teaching delivery in the WS Wharton School of Business QS Stars, recognizing innovation in teaching.
TELL US ABOUT LIFE AS A BUSINESS SCHOOL PROFESSOR
I knew I wanted to be a business school professor when… I received a telephone call from one of my favorite Finance professors at my Alma Mater, Tulane University! Tulane provided me an incredible hands-on experience that opened many doors for me in business and I knew I wanted to provide experiential versus theoretical learning for the next wave of business students.
What are you currently researching and what is the most significant discovery you’ve made from it? My role in teaching Burkenroad Reports is to work with students to research and create equity analysis reports for 40 southern-US companies each year – much like the sell-side research conducted by investment banks. I’m constantly analyzing what’s happening in the real world, how it impacts companies students cover, and the best way to bring these topics into the classroom. I’m fortunate to occupy a very different, yet practical, research space compared to other traditional professors.
If I weren’t a business school professor, I’d be… Finance is my passion so I would likely continue to be heavily involved in Investment Banking, Private Wealth Management, Private Equity and the like. I also enjoy owning and managing real estate.
What do you think makes you stand out as a professor? I approach students as both my customer and my product that need to be ready for the world. I spend the vast majority of my time incorporating real world problems and topics to prepare my students to be highly competitive so they are equipped to take on the realities of the world.
One word that describes my first time teaching: Exhilarating
Here’s what I wish someone would’ve told me about being a business school professor: Having taught the same course for over 10 years now, early on I didn’t quite realize how influential professors can be in student’s lives and future careers.
Professor I most admire and why: Without a doubt, the Professor I admire the most is Professor Peter Ricchiuti. He is the founder of Tulane’s incredible program, Burkenroad Reports, that I’m so very fortunate to be a part of. Professor Ricchiuti’s energy, drive, and pursuit of excellence are traits I try and emulate within my life. There is no doubt that any success I have been fortunate enough to receive is in large part due to his presence.
TEACHING BUSINESS SCHOOL STUDENTS
What do you enjoy most about teaching business students? The energy and eagerness to learn, to question, and to discover. I love getting into topics that students haven’t fully linked with how things work in the real world and seeing the lightbulb come on.
What is most challenging? The most challenging aspect of teaching is staying ahead of what students are already being exposed to and learning earlier now than ever. Today’s world is moving faster and faster, and information is available immediately. My role in many ways is teaching students how to think about and apply the wealth of information that is available today.
In one word, describe your favorite type of student: Engaged
In one word, describe your least favorite type of student: Apathetic
When it comes to grading, I think students would describe me as… Difficult, but fair. Burkenroad Reports is widely regarded to be one of the hardest courses students can take within Tulane’s business school.
LIFE OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM
What are your hobbies? I am pretty much a big kid – I collect old Vespa Scooters, I am a private aircraft pilot, and working on my yacht captains license. My students believe I spend all my spare time making complex Excel documents (shhh!).
How will you spend your summer? My wife and I will be visiting and exploring Montana with family for a weeks, which I’m very much looking forward to. I’m also trying to talk her into chartering a boat in the Caribbean and putting my captains license to the test!
Favorite place(s) to vacation: We love to travel and experience new places, in general we find ourselves drawn to either beach or mountain locations. Dauphin Island, AL and Waynesville, NC are a few of our US favorites.
Favorite book(s): 1984 – George Orwell
What is currently your favorite movie and/or show and what is it about the film or program that you enjoy so much? Ozark on Netflix. I love the storyline – which technically incorporates Finance! – and the characters.
What is your favorite type of music or artist(s) and why? I listen to everything from Rock, Rap, and Country. I enjoy a good story within a song and an upbeat tempo.
THOUGHTS AND REFLECTIONS
If I had my way, the business school of the future would have much more of this… Collaborations between real businesses and students / courses. Experiential learning is transforming the competitiveness of our students. I hope collaborations similar to what has been built with Tulane’s Burkenroad Reports continue to be developed within our universities.
In my opinion, companies and organizations today need to do a better job at… Retaining employees. It has become commonplace for students’ career paths to jump between companies as they seek growth opportunities which aren’t available or being nurtured at their current place of employment. It is short-sighted and ultimately costly for companies to constantly churn talent. Clear achievable growth within a company should be communicated, and far too often I think the message to employees is to seek opportunity elsewhere.
I’m grateful for… My beautiful wife for taking a chance on a thick-accented, little-bit-quirky, Georgia southerner.