Professor Mitchell A. Petersen

Kellogg School of Management

Northwestern University

Information for Alumni and Past Students

This page is for alumni of Kellogg and my past students. It is in an early stage of development. My past students have said they would like to keep in contact with finance at Kellogg and this page is my attempt to make that easier. If you have suggestions on what should be on these pages, let us know.

  • Contact Information

Glen Vasel Associate Professor of Finance

Kellogg School of Management

Northwestern University

2001 Sheridan Road

Evanston, IL 60208

(847) 491-3562 (finance department)

(847) 467-1281 (office)

(847) 491-5719 (fax)



  • Teaching. These are the classes that I am currently teaching in the MBA program. Since Executive Education programs content varies from program to program, I haven't posted this material. If you have examples or ideas for class, please let me know. The course syllabi are available in Adobe Acrobat format.
    • Corporate Finance (Finance II/Finance 441) This course covers the basics of capital budgeting, dividend policy, and capital structure. It is the second course in the finance sequence.
    • Financial Strategy and Tax Planning. This course is intended to fill the gap between an MBA who is well trained in finance and the tax experts that they rely on in their career (tax lawyers). The course teaches the logic and structure of different tax codes (present, past, and future - U.S. and non-U.S.) and more importantly how to apply this knowledge. Students learn how the structure of the tax code changes the finance decisions they will be expected to make: capital budgeting (investment decision) and capital structure (financing decision). The course is considered an advanced corporate finance course (Finance III?) and part of the Analytic Finance Major requirements. We start with the basic sources of gains from tax planning and then illustrate the general principles with a number of examples and a few cases. Although there are myriad techniques used in practice, there are just a few basic idea underlying all tax-planning strategies.
    • Real Options. Valuation is at the core of most finance courses and discounted cash flow is the foundation of most valuation methods. Despite the unquestionable importance of DCF, not all valuation methods outside the classroom are based on elaborate DCF models. This course starts by exploring the role of multiples and comparable analysis in valuation by pricing an IPO in a relatively new industry. One of the biggest challenges to DCF is forecasting the cash flows. This challenge is heightened when the firm and/or the industry are new. There has been growing interest in real options valuation methods and the remaining sessions will examine the use of real options valuation methods to value both investment projects and firms. Through the use of several numerical examples - beginning with the simple and moving to the more complicated - we will develop an understanding of both the intuition behind real options valuation methods as well as a familiarity with the computation tools used to value these options (Black-Scholes, Binomial models, and Simulation). The intent of the course is to expand the student's knowledge of valuation - both the intuition of how it should be done as well as the practice of how it is done. Understanding when the two are the same and when they are not can be very valuable.
    • Analytic Finance Major. As you may know, the number of finance majors has grown dramatically at Kellogg. This combined with demand from our students and our recruiters prompted us to create a new major in the Fall of 1999. The first class to graduate as analytic finance majors finished in the Spring of 2001.

Questions about this page can be directed to

[Finance Department] [Kellogg Home Page ] [ Northwestern University Home Page ]

Last Revised: September 18, 2001