Business Experiential Learning Classes Provide Win-Win for Students and Clients
Working with clients gives business students real-world experience helping them go beyond business as usual. Several courses spring semester have been working with clients on the BGSU campus.
Dr. David Reid’s Advanced Sales Planning and Sales class worked with the University’s Athletics Office, selling event tickets to both individuals and companies. Professor Reid says it is critical for his students to learn through a hands-on approach because "sales skills are learned skills that require practice to master. The best way to learn how to sell is to actually do it and students in this class aren't just reading about sales, they're making them."
Kyle McGuire, the director of Ticket Sales and Premium Seating for the BGSU Athletic Department, worked with Dr. Reid’s class. “I believe that the partnership between the College of Business and the BGSU Ticket Sales Department is a great fit. The opportunity allows for students at BGSU to gain real life sales experience while gaining knowledge with CRM, sales software, and overall organization.”
“The students have been doing a great job of coming in and executing their sales calls, managing their time, and growing through the process,” states McGuire.
Students saw value in this experiential project as well. Senior Collin Newton, pictured left with classmate Dan Bixel, describes his excitement. "The project with BGSU athletics was one of the most interesting projects I have ever had for a class."
Newton adds, "In our sales classes we learn about the preparation, the sales process, and how to conduct a professional sales meeting. What we do not learn is the patience necessary to obtain that meeting, and we learn this from the ticket sales project. I am no longer afraid to pick up a phone and call someone!”
Besides the sales course, the Applied Business Experience (BizX) lab courses have also kept it “real” by partnering with several clients on campus to help them plan and prototype projects through the design thinking process. Dining Services is working on plans for a food/coffee shop inside the new business building – the Robert W. and Patricia A. Maurer Center. Jerome Library has several projects, including the Collab Lab, while the Student Recreation Center is exploring ways to increase revenue through faculty and staff memberships and additional fee-based activities.
Jon Zachrich, director of marketing and communications for Dining Services, finds the collaboration rewarding. “BGSU Dining is proud to work with students in the BizX courses to help provide real world situations to better understand design thinking. Creating opportunities to help students grow academically is a wonderful part of my job.”