Changing lives, leading by example

Alumni reflect on the vast impact three retiring accounting professors have made

By Matthew Biddle

It is no exaggeration to say that Kathy Nesper, Alex Ampadu and Muriel Anderson have made an impact on thousands of School of Management students.

With more than 75 years of service to UB between them, these outstanding educators—who all announced their retirement during the last academic year—have shaped the careers of countless alumni and students.

Nesper departed after the fall 2021 semester, while Ampadu and Anderson will retire this summer.

Kathy Nesper, clinical assistant professor

Kathy Nesper.

Nesper first came to the School of Management more than four decades ago for her bachelor’s degree and, later, her MBA. Before shifting to higher education, Nesper worked in accounting for a pair of CPA firms, as well as in a series of progressive roles for Delphi Harrison Thermal Systems in Lockport. Along the way, she earned several professional credentials, becoming a CPA, Certified Fraud Examiner, Certified in Financial Forensics and Chartered Global Management Accountant.

In 2006, Nesper joined the School of Management, teaching courses—both at UB and the Singapore Institute of Management—in cost and managerial accounting, fraud detection and prevention, and internal audit. She also served as faculty advisor to both the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and Beta Alpha Psi for many years, receiving the Outstanding Faculty Advisor award from Beta Alpha Psi in 2015.

“When I was president of Beta Alpha Psi, Kathy supported all of our activities—including a great regional conference trip with a busload of noisy college students,” says Nate Carbrey, BS/MBA ’12, controller at, who will take over teaching Nesper’s fraud course this fall. “Kathy knew how to encourage us all to stay relaxed and have fun while working on whatever was in front of us.”

Alex Ampadu, clinical associate professor

Alex Ampadu.

For a quick snapshot of Ampadu’s impact on students, refer to the “Awards” section of his CV, which lists, among other accolades, School of Management Teacher of the Year, Outstanding CPA in Education from NYSSCPA, Outstanding Faculty Advisor for Beta Alpha Psi, and the Milton Plesur Excellence in Teaching Award—for which Ampadu was selected a record four times by UB undergrads.

A School of Management faculty member since 1986, Ampadu taught courses in such areas as managerial accounting, financial accounting, auditing and financial statement analysis. He also created and served as director for the school’s internal auditing program, which remains one of just 34 programs endorsed by the Institute of Internal Auditors around the globe.

Beloved by students and alumni alike, Ampadu served as faculty liaison to the Accounting Advisory Council and as a mentor to students for professional exams and career advice.

“Professor Ampadu’s tireless efforts and dedication helped many students like me navigate the recruiting season, secure an internship to gain real-life audit experience, and eventually land a great job opportunity,” says Jessie Wang, BS ’10, MS ’11, MS ’12, vice president – technology audit at Morgan Stanley. “Even today, Professor Ampadu is still my go-to person to discuss career opportunities and get life advice. He has been an amazing mentor to me, for which I am very grateful.”

Ampadu holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Ghana and an MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology. He is a CPA, Certified Management Accountant, Certified Internal Auditor, Certified Fraud Examiner, Forensic CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant and Certified in Financial Forensics.

Muriel Anderson, clinical associate professor

Muriel Anderson.

Anderson’s tenure in the School of Management has taken her from the Career Resource Center to the faculty, allowing her to impact students from first-year undergrads to working professionals in the PMBA program along the way.

After earning her bachelor’s in accounting from the School of Management in 1987, Anderson, a CPA, went to M&T Bank for nearly a decade, serving as vice president and deputy auditor. Then, in 1998, she returned to the school as student services manager in the Career Resource Center and earned her MBA.

From there, Anderson received dual faculty appointments in the Accounting and Law and the Organization and Human Resources departments, teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in financial analysis, workforce engagement, managerial accounting and human resources management, among other areas. In addition, Anderson was integral to the development of the award-winning MBA LeaderCOREā„¢ program, serving as faculty co-director when the program launched in fall 2010.

Like her departing colleagues, Anderson has amassed many teaching accolades throughout her tenure, including five School of Management Undergraduate Teacher of the Year awards and the inaugural Arjang A. Assad Excellence in Teaching Award. Most recently, Anderson received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Niagara County Community College, where she earned her associate degree before coming to UB.

It was through LeaderCORE that Landry Willard, MBA ’14, first connected with Anderson, who offered Willard a job grading assignments for her undergrad HR course.

“Muriel always seemed to be doing so much—teaching her regular course load plus extra courses, volunteering on nonprofit boards and preparing community members’ taxes, to name a few—and she stayed so composed while doing it all,” says Willard, safety assurance coordinator at National Fuel Gas Co. “Having her as an example of a smart and strong woman with an impressive work ethic helped keep me going through long days of classes, extracurriculars and internships during the MBA program—and I’ve carried that example with me as a professional.”